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New mandatory industry codes are being developed by the Australian Government to outline the responsibilities of the private sector in relation to scam activity, with a focus on banks, digital communications platforms, and telecommunications providers. A short survey is also available for members of the public who wish to participate in the consultation process and provide information about their experience with scams, rather than provide a written submission.

You can read the Consultation Paper and how to make submissions here. Submissions are due by 29 January 2024.

Read More Have Your Say on the Scams Mandatory Industry Code Survey

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A few days ago, on November 20th 2023 the Albanese Government’s Competition Taskforce released a Consultation Review on Australia’s laws and practices surrounding mergers. Below is information from the Treasury website on the consultation paper as well as how to make a submission and what to include. The Treasurer has also issued a media release on the consultation which is available here. Submissions for the merger consultation paper close on January 19th 2024.

Read More Submissions Open for Consultation Paper on Merger Reform

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The Consumers’ Federation of Australia (CFA) was recently contacted (below) by and about the Parliamentary Joint Committee on Law Enforcement’s new inquiry into cybercrime. As per our new Strategic Plan, CFA will not be writing up a separate submission but will instead network and assist members and other consumer advocates and organisations with their submissions.…

Read More Inquiry into the capability of law enforcement to respond to cybercrime

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The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) yesterday released the second interim report for their 2022-23 inquiry into childcare. Included in the report are draft findings and recommendations on the costs, profitability and viability, policy, and effectiveness of market regulations specific to the Australian childcare sector – with reference to other OECD countries which largely…

Read More Market Forces Fail to Deliver Accessible and Affordable Childcare

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Australia Post is proposing to increase its stamp prices by 25 per cent from January 2024.

This change would increase the price of delivering reserved ordinary small letters from $1.20 to $1.50, ordinary large letters up to 125 grams from $2.40 to $3.00 and ordinary large letters between 125 grams and 250 grams from $3.60 to $4.50.

Australia Post is not proposing to increase the price of concession stamps (60 cents each) or stamps for seasonal greeting cards (65 cents).

Read More ACCC Opens Submissions on Australia Post’s Proposed Price Increases

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The Queensland Consumers Association’s submission (#56) to a House of Representatives Inquiry says changes are needed to the grocery unit pricing (pricing per unit of measure) system to make it much easier for consumers to compare grocery prices and values.

The submission also strongly supports the Consumers Federation of Australia’s submission to the inquiry which includes support for demand-side initiatives to promote competition and recommendations on unit pricing.

Read More Submission to House of Representatives Inquiry calls for improvements to grocery unit pricing

The Consumers’ Federation of Australia has made a further submission to the Australian Competition & Consumer Commission (ACCC) about the proposed merger of ANZ Banks and Suncorp Bank. The submission, following the publication of ACCC’s preliminary views, agrees with the ACCC that there are regulatory and structural barriers for smaller providers and newer entrants in…

Read More CFA Response to Proposed Suncorp-ANZ merger

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Following the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission’s (ACCC) Digital Platform Services inquiry in 2019, and the Treasury’s recent follow-up consultation the Telecommunications Industry Ombudsman (TIO) placed a submission late February 2023 to expand their remit from telecommunications to digital platform services (e.g. search engines, apps). The TIO has supported the proposal for a Digital Platforms…

Read More TIO Submission for Digital Platforms Ombudsman

The Queensland Consumers Association has made a submission to the Senate Select Committee on the Cost of Living which is inquiring into: the cost of living pressures facing Australians; the Government’s fiscal policy response to the cost of living; ways to ease cost of living pressures through the tax and transfer system;  measures to ease…

Read More Queensland Consumers Association Makes Submission to Senate Cost of Living Inquiry

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Consumers’ Federation of Australia has made a submission to the ACCC consultation, ANZ proposed acquisition of Suncorp Bank. The CFA considers that the proposed acquisition is likely to substantially lessen competition for retail banking services in Australia. We also consider the likely detriments of the proposed acquisition exceed any likely public benefits. CFA’s submission notes that ANZ’s proposed…

Read More CFA submission cautions against ANZ proposed acquisition of Suncorp Bank

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Following its decision to require grocery retailers to provide consumers with unit pricing (pricing per unit of measure), the NZ government recently released a wide ranging Discussion Paper seeking views on many aspects of unit pricing, including system design, scope and implementation, prior to releasing draft legislation. It is now considering submissions received. The system…

Read More Australians make submissions on proposed NZ grocery unit pricing system