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Wool industry welcomes tougher powers for ACCC

Feb '07
National woolgrower body, WoolProducers Australia, has welcomed the announcement by Federal Treasurer Peter Costello that the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) will be given more power to combat secondary boycotts.

In commending this initiative, WoolProducers Australia President Robert Pietsch, cited the potential for the proposed amendments to the Trade Practices Act 1974 to address the trend of intimidatory, aggressive and illegal behaviour of animal extremists.

“What the Treasurer has announced is a very important step forward to protecting the rights of general community,” said Mr Pietsch.

“These amendments will allow the ACCC to take action against extreme animal rights groups under the secondary boycott provisions when they threaten legitimate businesses or cause losses from their illegal behaviour.”

“In the absence of the appropriate legislative power, Australian woolgrowers have been forced to pursue the radical US based animal rights group People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) in the Federal Court for conducting the exact behaviour that these changes are trying to curtail.”

“The amendments are an acknowledgment that there is a problem, and vindicate the action being taken by Australian Wool Innovation on behalf of the industry to pursue PETA in the courts, when no other avenue existed.”

Given what he describes as a compelling case for legislative change, Mr Pietsch also dismissed any suggestion that the amendments could actually reduce consumer choice.

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