Consumer protection aims to stop consumer abuse

Independent Consumer and Competition Commission Commissioner Paulus Ain made these comments when officially opening the 'consumer protection and market conduct framework workshop for PNG financial sector' today in Port Moresby.

The two-day  workshop aims to draw up recommendations for a draft guideline to protect consumers from financial institution marketing.

Are people benefiting from lower fuel costs?

Opposition leader Don Polye said the ICCC must plan to create a win-win situation for the seller and the buyer within the context of current economic challenges.

He said the ICCC needs to upgrade their programs and introduce a new strategy to prescribe minimum (standardised) pricing for oil (fuel, gas) related trade in PNG. 

“The ICCC should not lay back and play a “wait and see” role as the determinants for world oil prices are clear which show that the oil price will not come up beyond US$50 per barrel quickly for the medium term. 

Consumers watchdog urges businesses to comply

Commissioner Paulius Ain revealed this today at a media conference in Port Moresby.

Ain made the statement after noting that many business houses were not sharing the benefits of reduced costs of fuel with their customers.

“When worse come to worse, we may look at, in the future, controlling some prices of these goods.

“We will take them back and price control and going back to the old days,” he said.

He urged the businesses to cooperate with them and help the customers and not be benefiting themselves.

Businesses profiting on reduced cost of fuel: ICCC

Commissioner Paulus Ain said since fuel is one of the major cost drivers in any cost inputs, the significant fuel price reduction over this period would have reduced the operational cost of businesses,  consequently some cost savings would have been realised.

“I am strongly of the view that the reduction in operating costs should result in lower prices of some goods and services.”

ICCC boss urges companies to pass on reduced costs

The Commissioner and CEO of ICCC Paulus Ain made this call in light of the significant fall in the retail fuel prices since last year.

He said that from July 2014 to November 2015, the global crude oil prices had decreased by a total of 69%, while over the same period the domestic retail prices for petrol, diesel and kerosene had decreased cumulatively by 36.1%, 48.0% and 47.6% respectively. On average the domestic fuel prices had decreased by 43.9%.

The fall in domestic retail prices had benefited the business houses and general fuel consumers.

Air Niugini does share deal with Vanuatu and Solomons

The agreement duration is for two years.

In a statement, ICCC Commissioner Paulus Ain said; “while the ICCC recognizes that the free sale arrangement may not promote vigorous competition amongst the parties in terms of airfares and other related in-flight products and services, the ICCC also recognizes that with the code-share, travellers will now have a choice.

“The two carriers will be competing to sell tickets under their respective codes as compared to the situation without the code-share where only one carrier would operate on the route and market the tickets.

Big drops in fuel prices

“Based on the Import Parity Prices (IPP) the prices of petrol, diesel and kerosene have all decreased for this month,” said Paulus Ain, Independent Consumer and Competition Commission Commissioner.

But the price drop will vary from Port Moresby to other provincial centres due to the cost of transportation of the petroleum product to the fuel stations.   

“As a result of adding all the various cost components, the following table shows the maximum retail prices of fuel that are to be sold in Port Moresby effective from tomorrow (September 8)).”