Develop Homegrown Solutions To Anti-Competitive Market Conduct,Africa Challenged

The International Competition Network (ICN), has held its first workshop in Nairobi, with the illustration that Africa is ready to develop homegrown solutions to its challenges.

This is the first ICN workshop to be held in East and Central Africa, clearly demonstrating that competition in law enforcement has come of age.

Speaking at the event, Competition Authority of Kenya Chairperson, Mr. Shaka Kariuki, said that the competition regime in Kenya and Africa had occasioned immense benefits to their citizens.

He noted that Regional Agencies have also expanded the scope of their mandate, to regulate conduct that has a cross-border dimension, an important ingredient for regional trade and integration.

Kariuki announced that the East Africa Competition Community Act, which is now operational, and the COMESA Competition Commission, which is actively executing its mandate, have entered into a partnership with national agencies, including the Competition Authority of Kenya, to enhance efficiency, transparency, a
nd predictability, when handling matters with a cross-border dimension, in order to promote investment while sanctioning anti-competitive conduct appropriately.

The Chairperson added that the centrality of the regional network to the success of the country’s national goals, could not be overstated because more opportunities for enhanced partnerships and co-operation, were expected to be drawn from the operationalization of the AFCETA competition protocol, more so to expeditiously attend to any challenge that may be occasioned by this noble and ambitious continental venture.

He highlighted that the ICN advocacy workshop, presents a unique opportunity for competition practitioners, as well as other key stakeholders, to engage in constructive discourse and learn from each other’s experiences and exposures that would drive positive change in their respective jurisdictions.

By leveraging on their collective expertise and diverse perspectives, Kariuki posited, they could develop solutions that addressed the comp
lex challenges of today’s global market.

‘I am proud to chair the Authority’s Board at a time when awareness of and compliance with tenets of competition law in Kenya, has witnessed a positive trajectory,’ he expressed.

Further, the Chairperson noted that their intervention in various sectors that impact a majority of Kenyans, has enhanced the welfare of consumers their primary stakeholder.

Kariuki cited an example of a cartel that involved four major paint manufacturers in the country, where consumers registered savings of Sh830,000,000 in the four years to 2022 and another Sh4,600,000 realized in consumer savings between 2016 and 2021 by consumers of cement products, following the Organization’s intervention to extinguish anti-competitive conduct.

He, however, noted that they continued to protect Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) from abuse by buyers, who take advantage of their powerful positions to extract terms that are highly disadvantageous to the SMEs.

Source: Kenyai News Agency