On 4 April 2014, the ACCC announced that it would not oppose the proposed acquisition by the Transurban Consortium of the tollroad and associated assets of Queensland Motorways Group.
The ACCC concluded that the proposed acquisition was unlikely to substantially lessen competition:
- while the proposed acquisition will increase Transurban’s electronic tag base nationally, due to the limited degree of interstate travel by motorists, the aggregation of Transurban’s New South Wales and Victorian businesses with QM Group’s Queensland business was unlikely to increase Transurban’s ability to raise roaming fees and thereby impact the competitiveness of rival bids in each relevant state;
- as tollroad owners and operators would have a number of alternatives to Transurban, including in-house development of the necessary electronic toll collection system and international market participants operating similar systems offshore; and
- given the countervailing power possessed by State Governments. The entities responsible for awarding new tollroad concessions would likely constrain Transurban in relation to both the market for the supply of tolling services to tollroad concession-holders and the market for the award of tollroad concessions.