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Harper appointed to chair Competition Policy Review


27 March 2014: Professor Ian Harper, an economist with Deloitte Access Economics, today welcomed the Australian Government’s announcement of the terms of reference for its review of competition policy, and his appointment as the Chair of an independent expert review panel.  

“It is a privilege to be asked by the Government to chair this important review.  As a prosperous economy, in a dynamic region of the world, Australia has a bright future.  To ensure our economy is in the best position to take full advantage of the opportunities, we need to make sure our competition policy framework strengthens our economy and helps us meet the challenges of the future.”

Professor Harper noted that the terms of reference for the review invite a wide-ranging assessment of Australia’s competition laws and institutions, but it’s also broader than that. The review panel will determine how best to foster competition as well as identify any impediments across the economy, in order to provide opportunities to increase productivity and living standards now and into the future.

He said: “We look forward to helping develop a new reform agenda more broadly across the entire economy, with competition policy as a key element.  If we can better harness the benefits of competition, we can secure stronger productivity outcomes that can boost our standard of living.”

Timing and process

The review terms of reference call for the publication of an issues paper and draft report, prior to the delivery of a final report to the Government within 12 months.  Professor Harper noted the need to thoroughly engage with all interested stakeholders throughout the review process, to make sure all voices are heard.

“I am committed to a deep and extensive engagement with all stakeholders as this review progresses.  I know my colleagues on the expert panel share my view that the best advice to Government comes from a strong foundation of consultation before recommendations are made.  

“We want to hear from all interested parties, both large and small businesses, consumers, and government bodies, as well as international perspectives, to ensure all views are properly considered.

“This review presents a unique opportunity to step back, listen, and consider any changes to our competition policies, to ensure we deliver better outcomes for consumers, by fostering competitive processes and vibrant and healthy competition between businesses of all sizes,” Professor Harper said.

Professor Harper will be joined on the Expert Panel by Mr Peter Anderson, Su McCluskey and Michael O’Bryan SC.

The panel expect to release an issues paper in the coming weeks, to help facilitate early exploration of the key issues and priorities for the review.

Professor Harper noted that regular updates on the review progress and consultation processes will be provided on the review website at

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