A Spirited Debate on Competition and Markets
Dr. Nadeem Ul Haque’s View (NUH): All markets face heavy government intervention. Mr. Ikram Ul Haque Qureshi’s View (IUHQ): Not all markets are facing heavy government intervention. But certain markets such as telecoms and electricity are perhaps being over-regulated. The government needs to reduce intervention where there is no sector regulator such as agriculture. Subsidies and support prices are destroying the agriculture. The government must focus on agricultural technology and gradually reduce subsidies and support price mechanisms. NUH: Government likes to control markets and be an active player from agriculture to industry. IUHQ: Pakistan has inherited most of its laws from the colonial regime such as anti-hoarding and profiteering law. They need to be abolished or at least reformed in a manner to leave the market on supply and demand and open and competitive bidding of products and services. Competition law is also one of the instruments which strictly prohibits imposition of any maximum or minimum resale prices. However, the fixing of resale price maintenance at minimum is considered lesser evil.