General Questionnaire

Last updated on March 21, 2011

India Competition & Regulation Report (ICRR) III Cycle
QUESTIONNAIRE (India Competition Perception Survey)

Background (Why the Survey?)

India embarked on the path of economic reforms in early 1990s by shifting to market-driven economic policies.
The thrust of economic reforms has been to allow for more competition resulting in better quality, lower prices and adequate levels of consumption.

Regulation of markets is however needed under certain circumstances to ensure that their working is not impeded through barriers created by market players i.e. markets continue to offer wide choice, with enough supplies available. Accordingly, changes are being made in the economic governance system of the country. This includes changing government policies/ measures; amending existing legislations or enacting new ones such as a new competition law,Idian Competition Act 2002, amended in 2007 (ICA); establishment of sector regulatory bodies in telecom, electricity, etc. All such measures are designed to ensure that markets function well in the new economic policy regime and yield desired results.

Now that the country is following a policy of market-oriented economic reforms for the past two decades, there is a need to assess the perception of stakeholders about the competition and regulation regimes prevailing in the country and also on the quality of regulation. Accordingly, a questionnaire has been designed to get feedback from stakeholders on the following four broad issues:


  • Awareness/knowledge regarding competition and regulatory Issues

  • Assessment of the quality of regulation

  • Assessment of the level of competition and nature of practices that prevail in the economy

  • Opinion about the nature and impact of government policies/measures

The questionnaires consist of 25(objective-type, multiple choice) questions .We thank you in advance for your valued cooperation and assure you of strict confidentiality. Neither your name nor the name of your organisation will be revealed in any document based on this survey.

*Mandatory Fields






*Please identify the stakeholder group you belong to, by clicking the radio button against relevant category:

Policy-maker/Government official (parliamentarians, central or state government officials,regulators)

Civil society organisations (consumer organisations, advocacy groups)

Academia (academic staff at universities/business schools,researchers, representative of research institutes)

Media (journalists, editors of newspapers and business magazines)

Other experts/practitioners (please specify)

Each question below has various options. We request you to please give your response by selecting the most appropriate option. Please select only one response by clicking the radio button unless otherwise mentioned.


I. Level of Competition that Prevails in the economy

1. Is there enough choice in the following products?


No choice

Some c




say/don’t know

a. FMCG (Toothpaste/ Soap/ Shampoo



c.Wrist watch

d. Electrical fan


f. Colour Television

g.Washing Machine

h.Desert Cooler/AC


j.Mobile Handset

l.Motor cycle/Scooter
m.Car (small segment)

2. As a consumer, how easy it is to get following essential services/utilities?


Very Difficult



Very Easy

Can’t say/don’t know

a. Bank account

b. Mobile connection

c. Land line connection

d. Cable TV connection

e. Electicity connection

f. LPG/ Piped Cooking Gas

g. Water connection

3. Suppose, you wish to switch suppliers, how easy it is to do so? Answer this question for all the services listed below:


No option to change supplier

Very Difficult



Very Easy

Can’t say/ don’t know

a. Mobile service provider (Please remember this will not change your number, as number portability has just been made operational across India)

b. Land line service provider (Please remember this would imply a change in your number)

c. Cable TV operator

d. LPG supplier

4. How good is the quality of service under the following heads?


Very bad

Bad quality

Good quality

Very good quality

Can’t say/don’t know

a. Mobile telephone

b. Land line

c. Cable TV

d. Electricity

e. Water

f. LPG/ piped cooking gas

II. Nature of practices that prevail in the market place

5. Sellers run promotional schemes to attract customers. It seems to have become a competitive necessity to run such schemes to realise sales, profits and market share objectives. Please indicate your opinion on such schemes:

a. They are in the interest of consumers
b.They do not deliver promised rewards and are designed to dupe consumers
c. Some schemes are good, some are designed to dupe consumers
d. Can’t say/don’t know

6. We often face the practice of ‘Tied selling’ (viz., doctors asking patients to get diagnostic tests done from prescribed laboratories/schools asking students to buy uniforms from prescribed shops/sellers). It is argued that this is a way to ensure quality. Do you think that this practice is appropriate?

a. Yes, it is an effective way to ensure quality, since reliability is a matter of concern in these services
b. No, this is just a means to make easy money and limits choice for consumers
c. Not always, sometimes it does help to ensure quality
d. Can’t say/don’t know

7. Presently certain professions (medical, accounting, legal etc.) are restricted from advertising their members/services. Do you think that such restrictions are justified?

a. Yes, such restrictions protect the public from misleading information
b. No, such restriction favours established firms, restricts entry and has anti-competitive effects
c. No, instead of outright bans, clear parameters should be defined for truth in advertising, ruling out inducements, misleading claims, etc.
d.Can’t say/don’t know

8. Certain industries in the country are characterised by one or two dominant firms. Please indicate if you think that such dominance is a matter of concern.

a. Yes, emergence of dominant position is a matter of concern
b. No, there is nothing to worry; market forces ensure enough competition
c. No, it is a natural monopoly due to the nature of the industry/technology
d. Can’t say/don’t know

9. In products like pharmaceuticals or FMCG goods, there are often complaints that producer have to concede sizable profit margins to retailer to get their products sold. Do you feel such practices raise the final price for consumers?

b.No, the MRP put a ceiling on final prices.
c. No, there are instances where retailers on the other hand share a part of the profit margin with consumers and sell below the MRP.
d.Can’t say/don’t know

10. In case a monopolistic supplier increases service charges/price of product sold, significantly, do you feel that the Competition Commission of India is empowered/will be able to investigate such anti-competitive actions.

a. Yes
b. No
c.Can’t say/don’t know

11. There exist cartels in several sectors of the economy. Do you think that the existing mechanisms (e.g. competition authority, consumer forums, any other agency at state/sub-state level) for addressing such practices are effective?

a.Yes, always
b. Yes, sometimes
c.No, never
d. Can’t say/don’t know

12. Are you aware of regulators in telecom, electricity sectors?

a. Yes
b. No

13. What do you think the role of a regulator is?

a. To develop and implement rules that create a competitive environment in the market
b.To implement the Competition Law
c. To facilitate business
d. Can’t say/don’t know

14. There may be several tariff/regulatory orders of independent regulators (viz. TRAI). Do you think that the regulators have been effective in enforcing their orders at the local level?

a. Yes, always
b. Yes, sometimes
c. No, never
d. Can’t say/don’t know

15. Have you or your fellow stakeholders ever been invited to participate in stakeholders’ meetings organised by regulators?

a. Yes
b. No

16. If yes, was the meeting participatory?

a. Not at all
b. Somewhat
c. Fully

17. The attributes of quality of regulation are independence, accountability, transparency and integrity. How can the quality of regulation be improved? Please rank these measures on a scale of 1-4 (choose only 1, 2, 3 or 4) in order of increasing importance.

a. By making regulatory bodies more independent
b. Allocating more budget
c. Good quality personnel
d. Reducing political interference

18. How would you rate the quality of regulation in India on a scale of 0-4 (Very poor=0 and Excellent=4)? Choose only among numbers 0, 1, 2, 3 or 4.

a. Very poor
b. Poor
c. Satisfactory
d. Good
e. Excellent

19. Some government laws are designed to address Public Safety/Environmental concerns. The government argues that this would help to ensure proper enforcement of related regulations and serve its stated objectives. Do you think this is the right approach?

a. Yes, this would compulsorily make people observe the rules
b. No, the mechanism adopted is not right; such order are anti-competitive in nature
c. No, the government should instead focus on other means of ensuring compliance
d. Can’t say/don’t know

20. Do you think that controlling the price of all essential drugs is the right way of ensuring affordability and access?

a. Yes, controlling the price of all essential drugs is the best option considering that normal market forces do not operate in drug delivery, as consumers do not choose the medicines they consume; it is the doctors and retailers that play an important role in purchase decisions
b. No, price control is not required at all; government should instead encourage competition with appropriate monitoring of prices
c. No, price control should instead be restricted to only a few medicines that have seen excessive price increase, and others should be put on a watch list
d. Can’t say/don’t know

21. India has experimented with price control of select patented products. Do you think that such action of fixing prices is the right way to protect interest of consumers?

a. Yes
b. No, the government should have entrusted the task of fixing prices for patented goods to a specialised body such as the patents authority
c. No, the government should have instead encouraged competition
d. Can’t say/don’t know

22. There are several instances of intervention in pricing of essential commodities to make them affordable to ordinary consumers/farmers; while the overall objective behind such intervention may be desirable, please indicate if you think the manner of government intervention is right?

a. Yes, always
b. Yes, sometimes
c. No, never
d. Can’t say/don’t know

23. Government often gives purchase preference to public sector units in government procurement in order to ensure their viability in the long run. Do you think such a preference policy is right?

a. Yes, it compensates PSUs for social objectives they are required to achieve and enables them to compete with private companies
b. No, it creates an uneven playing field and distorts the market process
c. No, the government should instead give PSUs autonomy and allow them to operate on a purely commercial basis
d. Can’t say/don’t know

24. There is presently a trend to appoint retired/retiring bureaucrats and judges as regulators. Do you think it is right to appoint them as regulators?

a. Yes, given India’s political-economy (where line ministers have a tendency to intervene in regulator’s functioning), such appointments allow regulators to maintain a congenial relationship with the government and enhances regulatory effectiveness
b. No, this precludes appointment of professionals and undermines regulatory effectiveness
c. Can’t say/don’t know

25. Do you think policy directives/fees & charges announced by a Minister/Department affect the functioning/autonomy of a regulator.

a. Yes, these actions interfere in the functioning of the regulator i.e. TRAI and undermines regulatory autonomy
b. No, these give policy directions for development of the sector and enhances effectiveness of the regulatory regime
c. Sometimes it amounts to interference and sometimes it helps in the development of the sector
Can’t say/don’t know





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