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Australian Anti-Monopoly Legislation

Australian Anti-Monopoly Legislation 82 THE AMERICAN JOURNAL OF COMPARATIVE LAW Anti-monopoly legislation along the lines of the Sherman Anti-Trust Act has not had a successful history in Australia. Federal legislation, modelled in part on the Sherman Act, was passed in the form of the Australian In­ dustries Preservation Act of 1906. Although still on the statute book this Act has been virtually a dead letter following the failure of an early prosecu­ tion in the Privy Council and six unsuccessful attempts by several federal governments between 1910 and 1919 to extend power in this field by consti­ tutional amendments. At the same time, however, both state and federal governments have utilized other more direct methods to control monopoly and sustain or stimulate competition. With insignificant exceptions, Aus­ tralia's railway systems are state or federally owned, and state ownership of railways has been an accepted feature of the Australian business structure since the nineteenth century. This has been the forerunner of a widely ac­ cepted view that public utilities regarded as "natural monopolies" are a legitimate form of governmental enterprise. In most states electricity under­ takings are state owned, gas corporations have been taken over, and in large cities public transport has been http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png American Journal of Comparative Law Oxford University Press

Australian Anti-Monopoly Legislation

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Publisher
Oxford University Press
Copyright
© 1959 by The American Association for the Comparative Study of Law, Inc.
ISSN
0002-919X
eISSN
2326-9197
DOI
10.2307/837166
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

82 THE AMERICAN JOURNAL OF COMPARATIVE LAW Anti-monopoly legislation along the lines of the Sherman Anti-Trust Act has not had a successful history in Australia. Federal legislation, modelled in part on the Sherman Act, was passed in the form of the Australian In­ dustries Preservation Act of 1906. Although still on the statute book this Act has been virtually a dead letter following the failure of an early prosecu­ tion in the Privy Council and six unsuccessful attempts by several federal governments between 1910 and 1919 to extend power in this field by consti­ tutional amendments. At the same time, however, both state and federal governments have utilized other more direct methods to control monopoly and sustain or stimulate competition. With insignificant exceptions, Aus­ tralia's railway systems are state or federally owned, and state ownership of railways has been an accepted feature of the Australian business structure since the nineteenth century. This has been the forerunner of a widely ac­ cepted view that public utilities regarded as "natural monopolies" are a legitimate form of governmental enterprise. In most states electricity under­ takings are state owned, gas corporations have been taken over, and in large cities public transport has been

Journal

American Journal of Comparative LawOxford University Press

Published: Jan 1, 1959

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