|Fair Trading Act 1973|
This was passed with the aim of providing protection for the publie against unfair trading practices and to provide for the proper implementation of prior legislation by the appointment of a Director General of Fair Trading with ancillary staff. The prior legislation included the Monopolies and Mergers Act 1965, the Trade Descriptions Act 1968, the Restrictive Trade Practices Act 1956, the Resale Prices Act 1964, the Hire Purchase Acts and, subsequently, the Consumer Credit Act 1974. The Director General, whose task is also to encourage fair competition, is neither a politician nor a civil servant but enjoys a quasi-autonomous status, with ultimate responsibility to the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry. Shortly after the first Director General was appointed the Office of Fair Trading was established; the former's role then became that of supervising the performance of this Office in carrying out the various duties and responsibilities initially given to him personally.
|Reference: The Penguin Business Dictionary, 3rd edt.|