Why is the Competition Review looking at mergers
Competition is an important driver of economic dynamism, productivity and real wages. Competition encourages productivity gains to be passed onto consumers through lower prices or higher quality products, and to workers through higher wages. This helps to ease cost of living pressures over time.
Mergers can contribute to the efficient functioning of the economy, providing a way for firms to achieve economies of scale, diversify risk and exit underperforming businesses. These efficiencies can potentially be passed on to consumers through lower prices, improved quality, and a greater range of products and services.
Mergers that are anti-competitive can limit innovation, reduce the range and quality of products and services, and increase prices.
The Competition Review is looking at:
- whether Australia’s current merger rules and processes are effective, enabling beneficial mergers while addressing those that could be anti-competitive.
- in what ways Australia’s merger rules and processes could be improved.
The Competition Review Taskforce will provide advice to government on whether any changes should be made to Australia’s merger rules and processes and what those potential changes may be.
The Competition Review has released a consultation paper and is inviting public submissions. The consultation paper covers emerging concerns related to Australia’s merger rules and processes, and presents a variety of proposed options for change.
For full details and to make a submission, see: Merger Reform consultation.
The Competition Review Taskforce will also be engaging in targeted stakeholder engagement and meetings to gather a diversity of perspectives representing consumers, business and industry experts.
An open public round table is also planned. To express your interest in participating, please email: CompetitionTaskforce@treasury.gov.au.
- Background Note – Economic literature relevant to mergers [PDF 248.36 KB] | [DOCX 298.49 KB]
- ACCC – Submission to Treasury on merger reform [PDF 459.44 KB] – 9 March 2023