The ACCC has granted conditional authorisation and approval to enable the Australian Institute of Petroleum (AIP), its current members, and any future parties approved by the ACCC, to cooperate to improve the security of supply of fuel products and facilitate the efficient use of refining capacity and fuel storage capacity during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The approval is conditional and solely for the purpose of dealing with the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on Australia’s fuel supply chain. The conditions include providing specified information to the ACCC about the actual conduct undertaken proactivley; providing further infromation to the ACCC on request and ensuring each party engeging in the approved conduct receives ACCC approval.

The ACCC notes in its Determination that it, while there is a risk of the parties sharing information that may dampen competition, it is considered a low risk and is managed by the approved conduct and reporting requirements, as such overall the ACCC considers that the conduct is likely to result in public benefit by improving the security of supply of fuel products to Australian businesses and consumers.

The approval comes after a series of interim approvals and consultation periods. Pursuant to section 101 of the Competition and Consumer Act 2010, a person dissatisfied with this determination may apply to the Australian Competition Tribunal for its review. An application for review must be made within 21 days of the date of this determination; that is, on or before 1/10/2020. If no application to review is lodged by this date, the ACCC’s determination will come into force on 2/10/2020 and will remain in effect until 31/3/2021.

Final Determination:

Register of action and consultation:

Review process and lodgement: