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Seventy-three percent of Japanese polled rated competition among enterprises as positive because it results in cheaper products and services, according to a Cabinet Office poll released Saturday.

The opinion poll on securing fair trade — the first of its kind — was conducted from February to March and covered 3,000 people across the country aged 20 and older. It received responses from 70.1 percent.

The poll showed that while 63.9 percent recognized that competition was flourishing due to the loosening of regulations, opinions on mergers and enterprise integration were divided with 43 percent saying they will activate competition, and 40 percent saying the contrary.

According to the poll, 73 percent of the respondents regarded competition among enterprises as largely positive and 15 percent regarded it unfavorably.

Among the reasons cited by the 73 percent were drops in prices of products and services at 74.3 percent, improvement in the quality of products and services at 66.4 percent, and the emergence of various, novel kinds of products and services at 47 percent, the poll said.

Meanwhile, 66.2 percent noted insufficiency in the government’s monitoring and regulation of bid-rigging practices for tenders. and 57.3 percent said the same of price cartels.

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