Dublin MEP Brian Hayes today said that Ireland’s Consumer and Competition Protection Commission could be handed more enforcement powers that would ultimately be in the interest of consumers and would allow companies to compete more fairly.
“Proper enforcement of competition rules is a problem across the EU. Competition authorities have to enforce both national rules and European rules; that requires staff, resources and expertise in competition law.
“It is welcome that EU Commissioner for Competition Margrethe Vestager has committed to developing legislative proposals which would be boost the enforcement powers of national competition authorities.
“This would be a welcome boost for Ireland’s Consumer and Competition Protection Commission. Ireland’s competition enforcement could be much stronger, particularly in a digital context. A European Commission study conducted over the past year has shown that Ireland’s competition authority has limited powers to gather evidence of wrongdoing from mobile phones, tablets and laptops and data stored on cloud-based services.
“As companies go more and more digital, we need proper enforcement of how they do business from a competition point of view. The Commission needs to pursue a clear agenda on this. The focus should be on ensuring that competition authorities have the right tools to deal with competition violations.”