Policy report

National competition policy

The Hilmer Report

25 Aug 1993

This report recommends implementation of a national competition policy for Australia. The Committee of Inquiry was established in October 1992 by the Prime Minister following agreement by all Australian governments on the need for a national policy and its basic principles. It is recognised that Australia, for all practical purposes, is now a single integrated market, increasingly exposed to domestic and international competition. A national competition policy aims to promote and maintain competitive forces to increase efficiency and community welfare, while recognising other social goals.

Competition policy is a broad topic comprising rules governing the conduct of firms such as those in Part IV of the Trade Practices Act, and a wide range of legislation, policy and government action. Competition policy affects sectors of the economy in different ways, depending upon the nature and level of competition existing in each sector. To deal with this complexity, the Committee concentrated on developing a framework of principles, processes and institutional structures which would be sufficiently flexible to deal with the scope of the subject and different sectors of. the. economy. The Committee has not sought to develop detailed policy prescriptions for. each sector of the economy, believing that this is art inappropriate approach for developing a national policy.

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