[Singapore] AIC Submits Comments on Proposed Changes to Competition Guidelines and the Issued Guidelines on Price Transparency (Oct 2020)

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The Asia Internet Coalition (AIC) submitted comments to the Competition and Consumer Commission of Singapore (“CCCS”) on the Consultation Paper on Proposed Changes to Competition Guidelines (“CP”). In addition, we would also like to express our recommendation on the recently issued Guidelines on the Price Transparency. In the past AIC submitted a comprehensive set of recommendations on the Price Transparency Guidelines, for CCCS’ consideration.

We welcome the CCCS’ intention to amend Competition Guidelines that outline the conceptual, analytical and procedural framework applied by CCCS in administering and enforcing the Act in Singapore. We understand that CCCS is updating its competition guidelines to provide more clarity and guidance to businesses in the digital sector. This follows the commission’s e-commerce platform market study report (the “Study”) released on 10 September 2020. We are of the view that CCCS has also urged e-commerce platform operators to raise sellers’ awareness and understanding of the Consumer Protection (Fair Trading) Act (CPFTA) and encouraged sellers to adopt its recommended “good trade practices.” The CCCS has been studying the applicability of its competition assessment tools to the digital sector since 2015. The Study’s proposed amendments to the CCCS’s competition guidelines crystallise its research findings over the last five years. As the COVID-19 pandemic catalyses business digitalisation in Singapore and the region, it is expected that CCCS will continue its focus on competition issues in the digital sector well into 2021.