The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) has started an investigation into restrictive lease arrangements between shopping centre landlords and tenants.
Welcomed by the Australian Retailers Association (ARA), executive director Russell Zimmerman said retailers supported an open marketplace and many restrictive clauses in shopping centre leases promoted anti-competitive behaviour across a number of retail categories.
"The ACCC’s preliminary investigations have already highlighted the anti-competitive nature of restrictive clauses in shopping centre leases by limiting consumer choice," said Zimmerman.
"Without restricting this debate to the grocery market, the ARA welcomes any change to local planning laws and shopping centre lease arrangements that support retail competition across all sectors including clothing and footwear, department stores, household goods and specialty retailing.
"Only a highly competitive marketplace will allow small retailers, larger national chains and international players to thrive and profit alongside each other.
"An open retail market free from restrictive and anti-competitive leasing arrangements would provide greater choice for consumers in regards to product and price in one location," he said.