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Law for small business too

NATANGA SMITH, [email protected]

Law for small business too

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SMALL MANUFACTURERS need to take advantage of the Fair Competition Act.
According to DeCoursey Eversley, director of fair competition with the Fair Trading Commission, the law is not just for large companies.
He was speaking during a recent seminar hosted by the Barbados Manufacturers’ Association (BMA) and FirstCaribbean International Bank at the BMA Secretariat, Harbour Industrial Estate.
“The law says that you have the right to participate equitably in the marketplace – the same as any business, as big as it might be,” Eversley said.
He said the FTC was aware that many small businesses did not recognise this and therefore did not take advantage of the law.
He noted that there were situations where manufacturers were forced to purchase raw materials at “excessive prices” that bear no relationship to the economic value of the product.
Eversley explained that when such complaints are made, the FTC intervenes.
However, he said: “There are also a lot of manufacturers who continue to pay excessive prices but don’t do anything about it because they are not aware of the law or because they just feel as though ‘the law is not for me’.
“The law is for you. Access the FTC because very often the commission doesn’t even have to come to a final decision,” Eversley said.
He said the company very often was “aware of what it is doing” and when contacted, would say it was already planning to make changes.
The director noted that the FTC was seeking a closer relationship with local manufacturers.
“We found that in the past we have come and spoken to persons but we haven’t had that relationship.
“What we’re trying to build now with the Manufacturers’ Association and the members is a stronger relationship, a relationship whereby you know what your role is and you know what the commission’s role is.” (NB)