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Jun 05, 2012, 08.54 AM IST
The Competition Commission of India is set to pass its final verdict on two of the most anticipated cases in the recent past – namely cases pertaining to the alleged cartelization by tyre and cement manufacturers – in the next two-three weeks.
Also speaking out for the first time over the growing clamour among sectors like banks and telecom companies to be excluded from the ambit of the competition law, Chawla bluntly said if that were to happen then the government might as well shut down the commission.
Below is an excerpt of Chawla's exclusive interview on CNBC-TV18. Also watch the attached video.
Q: While FIPB may look at introducing certain riders, as far as looking into health concerns are concerned, you on the other hand (CCI) can continue vetting such FDI from a competition angle. Do you think both can sort of co-exist as far as this is concerned?
A: Having dual control is not a good thing. What that means is: From nobody approving or nobody overseeing such transactions, parties who wish to go through this process of investment in brownfield projects, will have to go to two different bodies to get approvals — 1) the FIPB, 2) the Competition Commission.
There is some amount of misconception between the role of the sectoral regulators and the market regulator. The sectoral regulators have a very crucial role to play. They are there to handle technical issues. They are there to handle some of the economic issues like tariff, royalty, licensing, which either the government does or they do and the government does on the recommendation of the regulator. The Competition Commission is a specialist body.
The two sets of bodies—the sectoral regulators and the market regulators—have necessarily to co-exist.
Why it is being perceived that what the competition regulator does can as well be done by the sectoral regulators. It is not so. The legal architecture doesn’t provide for that and if it did provide for that then the legislature in its wisdom would not have enacted the Competition Act.
Q: If banks are already as you are saying is almost excluded now from the Competition Act and if telecom sector is also sort of removed then will it somewhere weaken the very role that Competition Commission was asked to play?
A: Certainly, if this virus spreads then you might as well one day windup the Competition Commission.
Q: Give us a little heads-up on the two big cases that was likely to be decided tyre and the cement. Are we given to understand in the final stages? Just help us understand where is it stuck and how soon are we going to hear from the CCI on this?
A: We are presently in the process of finalising our decision. So, I would think that both matters will reach finality, whatever it is maybe in the next 2-3 weeks.
May 21 2013, 13:56
- in Results Boardroom
May 21 2013, 11:05
- in MARKET OUTLOOK