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Abbott wants ACCC to be 'champion' of small business
15/06/2012 - Opposition Leader Tony Abbott wants the competition watchdog to be the champion of small business.
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Abbott said the coalition had already pledged to conduct a full review of competition policy if it wins the next federal election.
He said under a new chairman the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) was listening and acting more, according to reports he had received.
But he said the coalition wanted to ensure that unconscionable conduct was properly policed.
"We want to ensure that the ACCC is a real watchdog with real teeth and is going to act, where necessary, as the champion of small business against big business," Abbott told a community forum in Adelaide on Thursday.
"Because big business has got the money to look after itself, but small business does need someone with deep pockets to come in an defend it on occasions."
Abbott was also asked to comment on the strength of Woolworths and Coles in the grocery market and said it probably depended on a person's point of view.
"If you are someone who are supplying Coles and Woolies, you tend to have a fairly critical view of them," he said.
"If on the other hand you're someone who is shopping at Coles and Woolies, you often have a fairly benign view of them.
"I'm not down on Coles and Woolies as such."
Abbott said businesses could not be legitimately stopped from trying to do the best possible deal for themselves, their customers, their staff and for their shareholders.
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