Con­sol­i­dat­ing re­gional growth

Nairobi Law Monthly - - Analysis -

re­gional com­pe­ti­tion leg­is­la­tion and en­cour­age the en­act­ment of na­tional com­pe­ti­tion laws, as well as es­tab­lish in­de­pen­dent com­pe­ti­tion agen­cies.

The EAC Com­pe­ti­tion Act, 2006, has al­ready been rat­i­fied by mem­ber states, and na­tional com­pe­ti­tion leg­is­la­tion en­acted in all mem­ber coun­tries ex­cept Bu­rundi and Uganda. Prior to this com­pe­ti­tion leg­is­la­tion, price-fix­ing, poor qual­ity prod­ucts/ser­vices, and mar­ket shar­ing were ram­pant in the EAC re­gion, ow­ing to in­creased cross-bor­der trade. The most af­fected sec­tors across the re­gion are telecom­mu­ni­ca­tions, trans­port, in­sur­ance, bev­er­ages, bank­ing and en­ergy.

To pre­vent fur­ther dis­tor­tion of com­pe­ti­tion in the com­mon mar­ket, mem­ber coun­tries are mak­ing ef­forts to es­tab­lish a re­gional com­pe­ti­tion au­thor­ity that will have man­date over the re­gional mar­ket in com­par­i­son to na­tional com­pe­ti­tion agen­cies. Once es­tab­lished, the EAC com­pe­ti­tion au­thor­ity will check cross-bor­der anti-com­pe­ti­tion prac­tices, and har­monise na­tional com­pe­ti­tion regimes of the mem­ber states un­der the EAC com­pe­ti­tion regime. Al­though the EAC Com­pe­ti­tion Reg­u­la­tions were adopted in 2010, there has been slow progress in the es­tab­lish­ment of the EAC Com­pe­ti­tion Au­thor­ity. Sev­eral chal­lenges have con­trib­uted to this.

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