I argue that it is time to explore the possibilities of a substantial reform, which should include: the renegotiation of the current 3,200 IIA; to stop signing treaties with arbitral clauses and extremely favourable conditions for investors; the promotion of an effective sovereignty States over the space that they should regulate; and the approval of binding obligations for companies. The failure to address substantive issues in ISDS, and to only focus on procedural aspects of reform, will lead to the consolidation and re-legitimatisation of this system, under the guise of “modernizing” it.
Illicit Financial Flows (IFFs) are one of several impediments to achieving sustainable development in developing countries across the world. While there is no globally accepted definition of IFFs, there is global acceptance that IFFs undermine the efforts of developing countries to generate domestic revenues to finance their national development agendas. According to the United Nations (UN), developing countries face an estimated annual funding gap of $2.5 trillion to deliver on Agenda 2030. In Africa, the continent loses approximately $100 billion annually through IFFs that are generated in and moved from the continent to tax havens.
In his contribution to this symposium on Eleanor Fox and Mor Bakhoum’s book, Making Markets Work for Africa: Markets, Development, and Competition Law in Sub-Saharan Africa (OUP, 2019), Jasper Lubeto notes the omission of Nigeria, Africa’s largest economy, as a case study in the book. This excellent book went to press before Nigeria’s competition law came into force in January this year. To add to the rich discussion in this symposium, this essay discusses the historical development of Nigeria’s new competition law as well as the players and forces that shaped it. Finally, it reflects on the challenges and opportunities open to the new agency established to oversee competition law and policy in Nigeria. This essay also precedes two other essays on Nigerian competition law in the next two days.
The book provides helpful examples of the challenges faced in terms of the financial and human capital needs for effective competition law enforcement as well as challenges of corruption and political pressure. Having set out these challenges, the authors document how some countries have very admirably dealt with them, showing how some competition authorities have risen to find effective solutions, making competition law worth much more than the paper it is written on.
We are proud to present this book symposium on Professor Eleanor Fox & Mor Bakhoum’s wonderful new book titled Making Markets Work for Africa: Markets, Developments, and Competition Law in Sub-Saharan Africa. This 2019 book from Oxford University Press is the most comprehensive look at the role that competition law can play in promoting economic development as well as fairness and equity in the diverse economies of Sub-Saharan Africa.
The conclusion of the AfCFTA comes in the wake of global trade facing a lot of uncertainty, with more countries becoming more protectionist and the global world trade order facing collapse due to rising tensions. Despite all this, Africa’s regional integration agenda remains at the core. The Protocol on Investments is meant to be continental wide project to protect and promote investments in Africa. The ultimate goal for the AU’s regional integration objectives should be to have one investment framework to regulate the whole continent.
This book symposium is about a new era of international investment norms in Africa. The discussion focuses on how to foster cooperation between African states and foreign investors in implementing sustainable development objectives and addressing global challenges. Several traditional investment treaties offer investors broad rights and protections that are backed by strong dispute settlement mechanisms. In the same vein, States have historically committed to non-reciprocal obligations in investment treaties that are seen as significantly limiting the policy space of states.