CHOICE hits out at price discrimination
Consumer advocacy group CHOICE has released damming findings that show Australian consumers pay in excess of 50 per cent more for a variety of electronic goods and services.
In preparing their submission for the Parliamentary Inquiry into electronic price discrimination against Australian consumers, CHOICE found that Australians are paying on average 34 per cent more for software, 51 per cent more for iTunes products, 88 per cent more for Wii games and 41 per cent more for computer hardware than their American counterparts.
In its submission to the Inquiry, CHOICE said that high IT prices were continuing to disadvantage all consumers and is serving to create even more barriers for people on low incomes or in remote areas. The high price, according to CHOICE, is also preventing businesses from fully engaging in the digital economy.
CHOICE made three main recommendations to combat international price discriminations:
- Educate consumers through government initiatives so people know their rights when shopping online - particularly in relation to returns and refunds, accessing legitimate parallel imports from foreign markets, as well as privacy and security.
- Investigation by the Federal Government into whether technological measures enabling suppliers to discriminate against Australian consumers, such as region-coding or identifying IP addresses, should continue to be allowed.
- Keep the low-value threshold (LVT) exemption for GST and duty on imported goods unchanged at $1000.
The full submission can be found here