In June 2013 the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) released new Authorisation Guidelines (new Guidelines). These replace the 2007 Guide to Authorisation (as updated by a 2011 addendum) (2007 Guide) and reflect the current approach taken by the ACCC to authorising otherwise anti-competitive conduct.
The Authorisation process
The Australian Competition and Consumer Act 2010 (CCA) allows parties to apply, in advance, for approval to engage in conduct that might otherwise contravene the competition law prohibitions. This process recognises that, in certain circumstances, conduct which restricts competition might nevertheless be in the public interest. The effect of authorisation is to provide parties with legal immunity in relation to the authorised conduct.
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