MoFE hosts dialogue to improve market conditions for SMEs

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Participants posing for a group photo. Image: MoFE

BANDAR SERI BEGAWAN

The Ministry of Finance and Economy (MoFE) recently held a dialogue aimed at defining the role of enterprises and their associations to create favourable market conditions for Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs).

The dialogue titled ‘Competition Order: towards a more efficient market and sustainable growth’ discussed key prohibitions of the Order, providing insights on how anti-competitive practices in businesses can create threats to growth.  It also discussed the benefits of compliance to promote business growth opportunities.

The dialogue was a priority before the Competition Order can be enforced – to which businesses will be publicly informed once the ‘grace period’ before its implementation begins.

Participants engaging with the dialogue. Image: MoFE

Leading the discussions were Competition Advisor Dr Hassan Qaqaya, who shared some of the business practices that could potentially be a threat to the introduction of the Competition Order.

The practices include sharing commercially sensitive information particularly on price exchange among members of associations, or information that could facilitate collusion among competitors such as bid rigging, market sharing and limiting supply.

He further explained however, that Competition Order does not protect competitors, but it protects competitive process as it allows a set of ‘rule of the game’ to ensure business players are in a level playing field to compete in a healthy business environment, and not a victim of anti-competitive practices.

Over 30 representatives across business associations including Young Entrepreneurs Association of Brunei, Brunei Malay chamber of Commerce, Brunei Darussalam International Chamber of Commerce and industry as well as banking, hotel, travel and shipping sectors attended the event.

The Bruneian