Competition and transparency are two important pillars of corporate governance and a series of significant measures taken by the Ministry of Corporate affairs, Government of India, and the Competition Commission have helped to bring about much needed progressive changes in the system. But we have a long way ahead in meeting the global standards and best practices in the Competition Laws and antitrust regulatory system. The collaborative approach by the legal fraternity, corporates and the government officials will certainly help to attain this standard eventually.
Competition Law in India has grown leaps and bounds over the last decade. From the MRTP era to the Raghavan Committee Report to the present framework, the law has developed with time, keeping in mind the growing trends of industry and commerce. Although the law was passed in the year 2003, it was effectively implemented only in the year 2009. However, the Competition Commission of India (CCI) has been very efficient since the implementation of the law, spanning across sectors, including adapting itself to modern practices of e-commerce and technology, including big tech regulation along with the age-old brick and mortar markets as well.
The CCI has also studied different sectors of different markets to identify the core issues in line with the preamble of the legislation – ‘economic development of the country and to prevent practices having adverse effect on competition, promote and sustain competition and protect the interests of the consumers.’ These reports are available to all industry participants to determine and evaluate the role they play in the market.
The CCI possesses three main functions, i.e., Adjudicatory, Regulatory and Advisory- part of the Advisory function includes ‘Advocacy’. We have seen so many cases and sectoral issues of cartelisation and such issues have been affecting the entrepreneurial spirit. In this era of integrated market scenario, such anti-competitive practices affect the free-market dynamics and its imperative to constantly improve the framework with timely changes in laws and regulations. The Competition Commission of India has been guarding very effectively the competitive ethos of Business and enterprises in India.
The author is Chairman, FICCI Karnataka State Council & Joint Managing Director, Jyothy Labs Ltd