During his state of the nation address, President Cyril Ramaphosa bemoaned the concentrated nature of the SA economy. This legacy issue has been a subject of the country’s competition policy for the last two decades, with the ANC resolving at its last policy conference to amend legislation to give the competition authorities more powers. It was therefore unsurprising that Ramaphosa made the announcement to sign into law the Competition Amendment Bill. However, one aspect of the act has nothing to do with competition policy: for the first time in SA, the legislation introduces an investment screening mechanism based on national security. Normally, this clause should have been located within the highly contested Protection of Investment Act. It is important to point out that national security screening of investments is international practice and has increased over the years as countries started receiving a lot of investments from China. What is usually at issue is the application of ...

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