The NZCC has issued the following media releases:

Industry regulation and regulatory control

Court endorses penalty in trans-Tasman cartel case

Visy Board Pty Ltd (Visy) has been ordered to pay a penalty of $3.6 million and its former senior executive John Carroll $25,000, for breaching the Commerce Act by being involved in price fixing. As part of a pre-trial settlement, Visy admitted liability for its role in illegal arrangements with Amcor Ltd, a competitor, to divide certain trans-Tasman corrugated fibreboard packaging customers between them. Mr Carroll admitted being knowingly concerned in, or party to, Visy's conduct in relation to the Fonterra tender for corrugated fibreboard packaging.

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NZCC issues final report on Auckland International Airport 

The NZCC has released its report to the Ministers of Commerce and Transport on the effectiveness of the information disclosure regulatory regime under Part 4 of the Commerce Act in relation to Auckland International Airport. The NZCC is required to provide its report to the Ministers in respect of each of the regulated airports as soon as practicable after any new price for a regulated service has been set. Auckland Airport set new prices on 7 June 2012.

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NZCC releases draft decision on Orion's customised price-quality path proposal 

The NZCC has released its draft decision on Orion's customised price-quality path proposal which takes into account Orion's extraordinary circumstances following the Canterbury earthquakes in 2010 and 2011. The NZCC has considered how the long-term benefit of consumers can be best met by assessing service reliability and costs. The draft decision sets a customised price-quality path lower than Orion sought which means its customers face smaller price increases over the five year regulatory period.

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Commerce Commission concludes review of the 2012/13 base milk price 

The NZCC has released its final report on the review of Fonterra's 2012/13 base milk price calculation. This is the price Fonterra pays dairy farmers for their raw milk. The NZCC is required to report on the extent to which Fonterra's 2012/13 base milk price setting process is consistent with the purpose of the milk price monitoring regime set out in the Dairy Industry Restructuring Act 2001.

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Mergers and acquisitions

Baxter International cleared to acquire Gambro AB subject to a divestment undertaking

The NZCC has cleared Baxter International Inc to acquire 100% of the shares in Gambro AB. The clearance is conditional on Baxter selling its worldwide Continuous Renal Replacement Therapy business to a third party.

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Statement of preliminary issues for PropertyIQ's application to acquire the business and assets of Terralink

The NZCC has published a statement of preliminary issues relating to an application from PropertyIQ seeking clearance to acquire the business and assets of Terralink. Both PropertyIQ and Terralink supply a range of property information and data analytics services in New Zealand.

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Menzies Aviation seeks clearance to acquire Skystar Airport Services 

The NZCC has received an application from Menzies Aviation (New Zealand) Limited in August seeking clearance to acquire 100% of Skystar Airport Services NZ Pty Limited. Menzies Aviation provides airport ground and baggage handling services at various airports in New Zealand. Skystar Airport Services provides the same services at Christchurch and Dunedin Airports in New Zealand. In September, the NZCC published a statement of preliminary issues relating to the application.

Click here for more on the clearance application and click here for more on the statement of preliminary issues.

King Pharmacy Group granted clearance to acquire Community Pharmacy in Linwood

The NZCC has cleared King Pharmacy Group Limited to acquire the pharmacy business of Community Pharmacy Limited. King Pharmacy owns and operates two pharmacies in the Christchurch suburb of Linwood: Linwood Dispensary and Eastgate Pharmacy. Community Pharmacy is also situated in Linwood.

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Telecommunications

NZCC seeks further feedback for UBA price review

The NZCC has released an update paper on matters relevant to its price review of the unbundled bitstream access (UBA) service. The UBA price review started last year and the NZCC expects to make a final decision in late October. Under current legislation, the price will apply from 1 December 2014. This update paper follows the Government's release of a discussion paper on the review of the Telecommunications Act 2001, in particular of copper network pricing principles. The UBA price review remains relevant in that review.

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Consumer issues

Four more souvenir companies fined for misleading tourists

Four companies and four individuals have been convicted and fined a total of $601,900 for selling visiting Asian tourists a range of imported alpaca goods as "Made in New Zealand", and making claims that duvets were 100% alpaca or merino wool when they were not. This is the second tranche of companies being sentenced for breaches of the Fair Trading Act. In March two other companies, Top Sky and Kiwi Wool, and two individuals were convicted and fined a total of $259,000 for similar breaches.

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Misleading green claims on plastic bags cop fines

A manufacturer of plastic rubbish bags has been fined $30,000 for breaches of the Fair Trading Act in relation to environmental claims that were liable to mislead. Pacrite Industries Limited pleaded guilty to ten charges in relation to claims about the oxo-biodegradability and environmental friendliness of its plastic rubbish bags, marketed as "Greensac" or "The Green One". The claims were made on the bags themselves, the company's website, in brochures provided to retailers and in media releases.

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