Why the Commerce Act 1986 is Unfit for Purpose
New Zealand’s Commerce Act 1986 overturned both common law consumer protections and previous legislation that had spelled out procedures for identifying and sanctioning the abuse of market power. Inspired by Chicago School doctrines and an anti-state philosophy, the legislation opened the way for three decades of monopoly profiteering, exploitation of the weakest consumer groups and anti-competitive conduct, while regulation has been absent or ineffective. In this article, key weaknesses in the 1986 legislation are examined, and some remedies suggested.
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