THE government’s policy of developing black entrepreneurs is being stymied by the existence of firms that dominate key sectors of the economy, competition commissioner Thembinkosi Bonakele says. How should the state assist a small farmer, asked Bonakele, when 80% of his route to market was controlled by four large companies? This situation was made worse by the fact that two companies dominated food manufacturing, said Bonakele, who was addressing delegates at a competition law conference. The theme of the 2016 conference is Competition Policy and Economic Growth. "Our development finance institutions are heavily invested in large dominant companies because that’s where the returns are," said Bonakele. He suggested the state should instead be taking more risk and providing finance to new entrants in areas where competition was needed. The commissioner said what was worrying about the South African economy was that large dominant firms tended not to innovate, they became inefficient ...

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