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Aviation, Banking

Aviation, smaller banks and social procurement on the agenda as Economics committee hits the road

House of Representatives 2 mins read

Upcoming public hearings for the House Standing Committee on Economics will focus on competition in the banking sector, aviation, and social procurement as part of its inquiry into economic dynamism, competition and business formation.

The public hearings will be held in Toowoomba on 30 June 2023, and on 4 and 5 July 2023 in Melbourne.

Committee Chair, Dr Daniel Mulino, said that ‘Competition issues are present in many sectors of the economy. Aviation and banking are two key industries facing high levels of market concentration and barriers to entry for new businesses, including regulatory hurdles and requirements.’

‘In the aviation space, the Committee looks forward to hearing from Virgin Australia and Bonza, the newest entrant to the market. Airlines have been the subject of considerable public commentary in recent months. The Committee looks forward to exploring issues of market power and competition.’

‘On banking, the Committee will hear from more established banks—Macquarie Bank, and Bendigo and Adelaide Bank—as well as from the Customer Owned Banking Association and a range of customer-owned banks. The customer-owned banking model has existed in Australia for many decades and gives Australians real alternatives to the retail business model.’

In both Toowoomba and Melbourne, the Committee will also explore the social enterprise sector and procurement. Dr Mulino said ‘Unless well-designed, procurement processes can favour incumbent and larger firms. Social enterprises and SMEs can provide Government with additional options that are both innovative and value for money, as well as adding competitive tension. The social enterprise sector is an exciting area that is not often considered in relation to competition, productivity and economic dynamism. Yet social enterprises—businesses that have a defined social, cultural or environmental purpose—operate in all sectors of the economy, enabling people from all backgrounds to contribute to the economy and flourish, and providing opportunities for more efficient government procurement.’

‘The Committee will be hearing from peak body, the Alliance of Social Enterprise Networks Australia, and the Victorian and Queensland Governments, as well as from several social enterprises, on how working with social enterprises in the procurement process can increase opportunities for new businesses, diversify supply chains, drive competition, promote innovation and create opportunities for all levels of businesses to compete for Government work.’

The Committee also looks forward to hearing from the Victorian Chamber of Commerce and Industry in Melbourne, to better understand the competition challenges facing small business.

More details about the inquiry, including the full terms of reference, are available on the committee’s website.

Public hearing details

Date: Friday 30 June
Time: 9.00 am to 3.00 pm AEST
Location: Toowoomba City Library, Toowoomba

Date: Tuesday 4 July
Time: 9.00 am to 2.45 pm AEST
Location: Stamford Plaza Hotel, Melbourne

Date: Wednesday 5 July
Time: 9.00 am to 2.45 pm AEST
Location: Stamford Plaza Hotel, Melbourne

The public hearing will be broadcast live at www.aph.gov.au/live.

Media enquiries

Committee Chair
02 6277 4311
Daniel.Mulino.MP@aph.gov.au

For background information

Committee Secretariat
02 6277 4587
economics.reps@aph.gov.au

For more information about this committee, visit its website. On the site, you can make a submission to the inquiry, read other submissions, and get details for upcoming public hearings. You can also track the committee and receive email updates by clicking on the blue ‘Track Committee’ button in the bottom right-hand side of the page.

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