Communications Bill—
Amendments to be debated in the House of Lordscontinued

House of Lords

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After Clause 365



Insert the following new Clause—
  "Duty to establish and maintain Competition Panel
(1)  It shall be the duty of OFCOM, in accordance with the following provisions of this section, to exercise their powers under paragraph 14 of the Schedule to the Office of Communications Act 2002 (c. 11) (committees of OFCOM) to establish and maintain a committee to be known as "the Competition Panel".
(2)  The Competition Panel shall have such functions as OFCOM, in exercise of their powers under the Schedule to the Office of Communications Act 2002, may confer on the Panel.
(3)  The functions conferred on the Panel must include, to such extent and subject to such restrictions and approvals as OFCOM may determine—
(a)  to advise OFCOM on the exercise of its functions under section 364,
(b)  to give an opinion to OFCOM on guidelines and decisions which OFCOM propose to adopt in the exercise of OFCOM's functions under section 364, including as to whether OFCOM or the Office of Fair Trading should investigate.
(4)  The Competition Panel shall as soon as practicable after the end of each calendar year make to the Chairman of OFCOM a report on its activities during that year which shall be published by OFCOM.
(5)  The Competition Panel shall consist of—
(a)  a chairman appointed by OFCOM; and
(b)  such number of other members appointed by OFCOM as OFCOM think fit.
(6)  The chairman of the Competition Panel must be a non-executive member of OFCOM but is not to be the chairman of OFCOM.
(7)  In appointing a person for the purposes of subsection (2)(b), OFCOM must have regard to their expertise in the area of competition law and/or economics.
(8)  The Competition Panel must include at least one member who is a member of the Board of the Office of Fair Trading.
(9)  Before appointing a person to be the chairman or another member of the Competition Panel, OFCOM must satisfy themselves that he will not have any financial or other interest which would be likely prejudicially to affect the carrying out by him of any of his functions as chairman or member of the Competition Panel.
(10)  A person is not to be taken to have such an interest by reason only that he is or will be a member or employee of OFCOM.
(11)  Every person whom OFCOM propose to appoint to be the chairman or another member of the Competition Panel, shall, whenever requested to do so by OFCOM, furnish OFCOM with any information they consider necessary for the performance of their duty under subsection (9)."

Schedule 17



Page 510, line 48, at end insert—
"(   )      Subparagraph (2) of Paragraph 103 shall apply to General Development Orders made under that Act or any regulations made thereunder."

Schedule 18



Page 531, line 3, at end insert—

"General saving for agreements containing rights or obligations established by reference to definitions contained in previous legislation

(1)      This paragraph applies where an agreement in force immediately before the coming into force of provisions of this Act which amends, revokes or repeals provisions of the 1984 Act, the 1990 Act, the 1996 Act or the Wireless Telegraphy Act 1949 or establishes rights or obligations by reference to definitions contained in those Acts.
(2)      Notwithstanding any amendment, repeal or revocation made by this Act the definitions referred to in sub-paragraph (1) shall continue to have effect in relation to the interpretation of such rights and obligations under a relevant agreement other than where specific transitional provisions applying to a relevant agreement are made under this Act."
Page 537, line 24, at end insert—

"Liability for payment of charges levied by pre-commencement regulators

(1)      This paragraph has effect where an agreement entered into prior to the commencement of the Act establishes liability for payment of charges levied by pre-commencement regulators.
(2)      Subject to sub-paragraph (3) below, such liability is not to cease to have effect or be capable of being enforced only by reason of the coming into force of the provisions of this Act.
(3)      In any such case after commencement of the Act, such liability shall relate to charges levied by OFCOM rather than to charges levied by pre-commencement regulators."

Clause 403



Page 353, line 5, at end insert—
"(3A)  Before making an order under subsection (2) appointing a day for the coming into force of section (Restrictive covenants affecting freehold property), the Secretary of State shall consult OFCOM and such other persons as appear to the Secretary of State to be appropriate."

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19 June 2003