Bangladesh Competition Commission (BCC) has suggested the government to comply with competition law for proper utilisation in allocating and spending incentive packages among beneficiaries.
The government has already allocated more than Tk 1,000 billion for Covid-19 recovery fund.BCC Chairman Md Mofizul Islam said, “We have sent a letter to finance division last month as our cautionary measure as any beneficiary of incentive packages can engage anti competitive law.”
The commission is yet to find out any anti competitive activities among beneficiaries so far, he said.
He added the commission is now investigating two separate issues that were supposed to violate the law. In a letter to the Finance Secretary Abdur Rouf Thaludar last month, BCC proposed to follow competitive neutrality rule under Competition Law 2012 for the implementation of big incentive package loans. Competitive neutrality means, state-owned and private businesses compete on a level playing field. This is essential to using resources effectively within the economy and thus achieving growth and development.
The letter also said, BCC will provide technical facilities to those who seek assistance against anti-competition activities among firms and financial institutions.
If the government wants to ensure sustainable GDP growth, market developers and market regulators should follow Competition Law 2012.
Additionally, the letter said, if the government follows the competition law, the country’s GDP growth can increase 2-3 percent per year, the letter reads.During the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, Bangladesh Bureau of Statistics declared the country’s growth rate slump down to 5.24 percent from projected 8.15 percent a year earlier. The letter said, “In theory, competition places pressure on firms how the entities increase their efficiency instead of playing fouls. Firms under such environment aim to innovate new products and services, which ultimately increase the size of business
Moreover, the letter emphasized that the government should ensure that the farmers get fair prices of their produce.
The government is now providing 19 stimulus packages worth over $12.11 billion (Tk 1,06,957 crore) to offset the Covid-19 shock on various sectors and minimise the sufferings of the people hit hard by the nationwide shutdown imposed to curb the spread of the deadly virus. The highest amount of Tk 300 billion has been allocated for providing working capital facility to the affected industries and service sector organisations.
The government formed the Commission in 2016 after enacting the Competition Act in 2012.