JIS News

The Code of Conduct regulating players in the petroleum industry has been effected. Minister of Commerce, Science and Technology, Phillip Paulwell made the announcement yesterday (December 20) at the weekly post Cabinet press briefing at Jamaica House.
He said the Code, which was developed by the Fair Trading Commission (FTC) sought to elaborate on provisions of the FTC Act and alert industry players as to behaviours permissible under the law, actions in breach of the provisions and the accompanying sanctions.
The Code of Conduct stipulates conditions for the relationship between wholesalers and retailers with regards to fuel prices, changes in rents and fees among other things. Furthermore limited liability companies will now be able to enter into agreements with the marketing companies. This was not allowed before. The time frame for contracts will now be a minimum of three years with a one-year probation period.
Mr. Paulwell said while it was proposed that the Code be initially imposed by the FTC, it was hoped that once it took effect the major players in the industry such as the marketing companies and the Jamaica Gasoline Retailers Association would be able, over time, to develop on the Code making it a self regulatory, provision voluntarily submitted by both sides. In the interval the FTC will police the application of the Code.
Under the Fair Trading Act the Commission is authorized to carry out on its own initiative or on request, investigations into the conduct of businesses in the country and to investigate and take necessary action where there is the abuse of a dominant position by any enterprise. This action can include the promulgation of a code of conduct in a business where the commission believes this to be appropriate.
The Code was developed as part of the government’s efforts to foster amicable relations between local petroleum marketing companies and dealers.
The Code came into effect yesterday (Dec. 20) and will be posted on the ministry’s website today at: http://www.mct.gov.jm.

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