The Competition Commission of Pakistan (CCP) has maintained its 3-star (out of 5) rating by showing consistent performance in the annual ranking of the World’s top antitrust/competition authorities in the Global Competition Review (GCR).
The Rating Enforcement is the annual ranking of the world’s leading competition authorities that provides an extensive evaluation of their performance and how they compare with each other.
The CCP’s three-star rating keeps it at par with the competition authorities of Turkey, Portugal, Switzerland, Sweden, Singapore, Poland, New Zealand, Austria and Mexico.
Pakistan and India are the only two countries from South Asia included in the Rating Enforcement 2017, with the Competition Commission of India (CCI) remaining a 2-star agency.
The maximum rating is 5-stars, which has been given to the developed agencies of the world such as the US Federal Trade Commission, France’s Competition Authority, Germany’s Federal Cartel Office, Korea’s Fair-Trade Commission, and US Department of Justice Antitrust Division.
The CCP continues to work towards promoting a healthy competition in all spheres of commercial and economic activity and to protect consumers from anti-competitive behaviour.
According to GCR, authorities appear in Rating Enforcement only if they engage in a significant amount of enforcement activity. Regardless of its rating, every agency included in Rating Enforcement does important work that merits close attention and attracts the interest of GCR.
The 3-star rating for CCP comes with a horizontal arrow showing that CCP performed as expected and indicating that not only has the authority retained its star rating, but also that GCR sees no reason for concern that it might be on the way to losing that rating anytime soon.
In the previous rating enforcement, the GCR noted: “the Commission… remains constrained by systemic pressures” and that the biggest challenge the CCP faces is in the judicial review process where its cases have been tied up in courts. This year, the GCR noted that “a bright spot for the Commission’s antitrust function in 2016 came in the form of the appellate system in Pakistan.”
The GCR further noted that the Competition Appellate Tribunal began hearing appeals against the Commission’s orders last year – and much to the delight of the CCP, the tribunal upheld many of its decisions. “Of these, the authority scored a particular victory when the tribunal upheld a nearly €1 million (PKR 100 Million) fine against the Poultry Association. In the financial year 2016-17, the tribunal adjudicated on 11 matters, ruling in favour of the Commission on eight of them. The Supreme Court of Pakistan has also sent all pending appeals against the Commission’s orders to the Tribunal, bringing the Commission a step closer towards the resolution of the judicial review process.”
While commenting on the powers available with the Commission to detect the anti-competitive practices such as cartelisation and abuse of dominance, the GCR said: “Sooner or later, the government will have to consider giving the Commission additional powers and tools for detection.”
The GCR noted that the Commission garnered applause for its continuing balanced approach to enforcement and advocacy, reaching out decisively to academia and private sector for better awareness of the law, its link with economics, and on improving compliance.