Doug Shave

Doug Shave

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    Fair Trading/Consumer Affairs Ministers meet in Perth

    20/07/2000 5:00 AM
     
    20/7/00


      Fair Trading Minister Doug Shave will chair the annual conference of the Ministerial Council on Consumer Affairs (MCCA) in Perth on Friday (July 21).

      “The Commonwealth, New Zealand and all State and Territory Ministers of Fair Trading and Consumer Affairs or their representatives will attend the conference,” Mr Shave said.

      “The MCCA is the peak government body on fair trading issues. It co-ordinates initiatives from the various governments and is very useful in developing national standards.”

      Conference agenda items include:
      • Banking: a discussion paper outlining proposals for minimum banking services will be presented and discussed;
      • Fuel Pricing: the MCCA will consider proposals regarding fuel pricing in Australia;
      • Frequent Flyer Points and Loyalty Programs: a strategy to address public concerns about obtaining travel through loyalty programs will be discussed;
      • Mobile Phone Radiation: community concerns and a proposal that the MCCA seek advice from the Australian Radiation Protection and Nuclear Safety Agency and the National Health and Medical Research Council will be discussed;
      • Youth as Consumers is the theme for National Consumer Day on November 24. Strategies to inform young people that fair trading agencies are a valuable source of information will be examined; and -
      • Fundraising appeals: The conference will be briefed on the progress of a working party examining a national approach to the regulation of fundraising.

      Mr Shave said he had also had the issue of market share of major retailers placed on the agenda for discussion.

      “There are strong pressures from major retailers to further deregulate trading hours,” the Minister said.

      “This could have serious adverse impacts on small retailers and result in less competition.

      “One way to avoid this might be to cap market share, as is done in the United States. The objective would be to avoid a small group of chains dominating markets and reducing competition.”

      Media contacts:
      John Clune, Minister’s Office 9213 6500
      Hayley Mayne, Fair Trading 9282 0961