Prices & Productivity
The Commission regulates and monitors prices of basic goods and services that matter most to ordinary Papua New Guineans that are declared by the Minister for Treasury under the Prices Regulation Act (PR Act). The Commission also has the added responsibility of conducting special inquiries on the economic productivity of certain industries when directed by the Minister or Parliament under PART VIII of the ICCC Act.
The Commission only regulates the prices of certain goods and services declared by the Government through the Minister for Treasury under Section 10 of the PR Act for price regulation purposes. Under Section 32A of the PR Act, the ICCC monitors the prices of these goods and services. In its role of regulating these declared goods and services, the Commission’s powers are very much limited to only the baskets of declared goods and services after having deregulated most of the goods and services allowing the market forces to determine the prices. These declared goods and services can be found under Declared Goods and Services with special mention on the productivity matters that the ICCC does in carrying out special and specific industry reviews subject to direction from the Government through the Minister for Treasury.
In choosing the form of price regulation that should apply to each of these declared goods and services, the Commission is required to consider the options that are available and are identified in the PR Act such as the price control under Section 10 of the PR Act and the price monitoring under Section 32A of the PR Act. Price control would require the Commission to have regard to the provisions of Sections 20A, 20B, and 21 of the PR Act. Price monitoring on the other hand under Section 32A of the Act provides a less intrusive method for price regulation.
Under the price monitoring approach, the suppliers of declared goods and services set their own prices according to their cost drives, while the Commission monitors these price movements with some independent price comparator. If the price is moving at a rate not consistent with the movement in the price comparator, the commission may recommend to the Minister for Treasury to redeclare the goods and services for direct price control.