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Lawyer Calls For Scrapping Guernsey’s Competition Watchdog

 |  July 6, 2023

Guernsey is facing an interesting legal debate as Deputy Neil Inder, President of Economic Development, calls on the States to scrap the island’s competition regulator. This comes as the Guernsey Competition and Regulatory Authority (GCRA) have voiced that well-regulated competition law is essential to healthy markets.

Under the current laws, any acquisitions exceeding £2million need approval from the regulator. The GCRA has signaled its reluctance to approve Sure’s deal to buy Airtel.

In response to this Deputy Inder has urged deputies to back plans to suspend the island’s competition law, as his proposal included potential investment worth tens of millions of pounds in infrastructure to improve network quality and services.

Deputy Steve Falla from the Committee for Economic Development has spoken out against the proposal and instead feels the regulator should be allowed to do its job for consumers. He said ‘surely if we are to make sure customers are protected and have choice and value, then the GCRA should be allowed to do so’.

Read more: Guernsey Competition Authority Fines Telecom Company

A GCRA spokesman responded to this, stating, ‘Effective and well-regulated competition law is globally recognized as essential to healthy markets and protecting consumer choice and value’.

The outcome of the debate is yet to be seen, but if Sure’s proposal is accepted, it will mean that Airtel’s customers are given deals with Sure under the same terms for three years. Thus securing the best possible outcomes for consumers and aiding large-scale investment in Guernsey.