Hilary Joffe Columnist

Economic Development Minister Ebrahim Patel announced proposed changes to SA’s competition legislation that aim to open up markets to new small businesses, particularly black-owned businesses, rather than relying for transformation on the transfer of stakes in existing businesses to black owners. The amendments will empower the Competition Commission to launch market enquiries into sectors which are dominated by just a handful of large firms and to impose remedies, if necessary, to open these sectors to new competitors. They will also require the competition authorities to take market structure into account when they scrutinise mergers, or alleged cartel activity. Patel announced the package of proposed amendments to the Competition Act on Friday, delivering on the undertaking he had made earlier in 2017 to put measures in place to  tackle SA’s high levels of economic concentration to  drive inclusive economic growth and transformation. "This is a bold proposal to place market conce...

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