CCP and ICAP join hands to implement compliance framework on Competition Law

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ISLAMABAD, JUN 24: /DNA/ – The Competition Commission of Pakistan (CCP) and Institute of Chartered Accountants of Pakistan (ICAP) join hands to develop a compliance framework on Competition law to be adopted by CA professionals working in various sectors of the economy.

This proposal was made by the council members of the ICAP to CCP at the seminar held on Competition Law at ICAP in Lahore. The seminar was part of the series of CCP’s advocacy and ICAP’s CPD activities agreed between the both. The first seminar of this series was held in ICAP Karachi which also got a great response from the stakeholders.

This latest session held in ICAP Lahore was attended by CEO, CFOs, Board members, entrepreneurs, professionals from finance, marketing and legal fraternity. A comprehensive presentation was made by CCP officials and a brief video was also displayed on core components of the Competition law.  Globally a high importance is being placed on the competition law as it deals with core matters of in the economy that include merger and acquisitions, deterring any anti-competitive and prohibited agreements, deterring abuse of dominant position in market, deterring deceptive marketing and awarding exemptions in certain cases against the criteria prescribed.

Addressing the session, Mr. Salman Amin – Member CCP emphasized that CCP is committed to foster open competition in all spheres of commercial and economic activities. He also highlighted the benefits that emerge for the economy and consumers as a result of open competition.  He appreciated that in Pakistan also there is significant awareness on competition law and such events are an integral part therein. Competition Law module is an integral part of Directors Training Programs being offered in Pakistan by different undertakings and is of great importance for business leaders and corporate leaders. Later, Mr. Ahmed Qadir (DG-CCP) in his presentation elaborated on component of the Competition Law. The presentation covered the key pillars of the Competition Act and the overall benefits of maintaining a competitive environment.

An important feature of the CPD event was an interesting panel discussion that had representatives from legal, marketing, finance, petroleum sectors. The panel discussion was moderated by Ms. Ammara Gondal, NRC-ICAP. Ms. Afsheen Rizavi of the Pakistan Advertisers Society (PAS) discussed the self-regulation in marketing practices and PAS’s collaboration with regulator (CCP) in developing a code to self-regulate advertising practices in Pakistan. Ms. Rida Aslam Bhatti from law firm RIAA Barker Gillette highlighted the constitutional aspect of having open and equal opportunity to a fair competition. Engineer Khawaja Atif Ahmad from the Pakistan Petroleum Dealers Association highlighted issues within the petroleum sector and emphasized the need for CCP’s intervention and facilitation in certain practices. Mr. Nosherwan Khawaja (FCA) stated the importance of understanding Competition Law for financial advisors while rendering of advice to their clients on various aspects, including on merger and acquisition and in due-diligence. Later participants had an interactive session with panellists and senior officials of CCP.

In the end Mr. Zeeshan Ijaz, Vice President of ICAP, expressed the gratitude and the benefits of this seminar on Competition law as it again leads to ethical practices and fair competition in the economy. He thanked CCP and ICAP teams for collaborating and structuring such and interactive and engaging session. On proposal from the council members of ICAP, it was agreed that a joint working group from CCP and ICAP will draft the checklist on the Competition law and will be used by CA professional working in various sectors of economy as CEO, CFOs, Board members, risk managers etc. This will be of great assistance in their informed decisions on various facets.