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QPC Highlights Momentum in Global Effort to Preserve Competition in Automotive Aftermarket
Las Vegas, NV – October 31, 2012 – This year, the Quality Parts Coalition (QPC) gained significant movement on its mission to preserve competition in the automotive replacement parts industry through the introduction of legislation in Congress. Achievements made by the QPC are part of the collective global effort to ensure free competition in the collision parts industry. QPC’s sister organization, the European Campaign for the Freedom of the Automotive Parts and Repair Market (ECAR), has in turn made progress this year working toward the same mission. Below are highlights of international legislative achievements this year.
• U.S. Representatives Darrell Issa (R-Calif.) and Zoe Lofgren (D-Calif.) introduce the Promoting Automotive Repair, Trade and Sales Act (PARTS Act), or H.R. 3889, to preserve competition in the collision parts industry.
• The Quality Parts Coalition launches the “Write Congress” widget powered by POPVOX on its website, www.KeepAutoPartsAffordable.org, allowing consumers to tell Congress they support the bill.
• The PARTS Act gains additional co-sponsors: Reps. Ron Paul (R-TX), Bill Cassidy (R-La.), Walter Jones (R-N.C.) and Dennis Ross (R-Fla.).
• The U.S. House Judiciary Subcommittee on Intellectual Property, Competition, and the Internet holds a hearing on the PARTS Act with QPC testimony delivered by Rockingham Insurance Group President and CEO W. Neal Menefee and Consumer Federation of America Public Affairs Director Jack Gillis who emphasized the benefits of the legislation to consumers and stressed the balance it strikes.
• While a majority of EU drivers already enjoy competition in the crash parts market under local repairs clause statutes, a pan-European solution is underway. EU legislation is still pending and awaiting support from a key country to obtain a majority vote.
• The French Competition Authority publishes a final position, affirming the view taken in its preliminary report, that a repairs clause should be adopted as it would lead to substantial benefits for French consumers.
• The Romanian Competition Authority takes a preliminary position advocating for the introduction of a repairs clause.
ABOUT THE QPC
The Quality Parts Coalition represents the interests of the independent parts industry, repairers, insurers, consumers and seniors. The goal of the Quality Parts Coalition is to develop and secure a permanent legislative change to U.S. design patent law to protect the consumer’s right to benefit from quality, lower-cost alternative replacement parts and to preserve competition. For more information, visit www.KeepAutoPartsAffordable.org.
Established in 1993, the European Campaign for the Freedom of the Automotive Parts and Repair Market (ECAR) is an alliance of 10 independent EU organizations representing vehicle parts producers, distributors, independent repairers, the European motor insurance industry, a large cross section of small and medium-sized enterprises as well as the 270 million motoring consumers in the European Union. ECAR’s main objective is to promote free competition and to prevent vehicle makers from monopolizing the vehicle spare parts market through abuse of design protection. For more information, visit www.ecar-eu.com.
Alla Shkiler, Ketchum