The COMESA Competition Commission (CCC) has been recognized as the most established regional competition authority so far in Africa. However, the CCC’s enforcement of the 2004 COMESA Competition Regulations (the “Regulations”) has not been easy. It has been marred with challenges. For instance, the launch of CCC –although established in 2004–faced backlash from some of the COMESA Member States, COMESA national competition agencies (NCAs), lawyers, and the business community even before it became operational. That is why it took almost a decade, in 2013, for CCC to commence enforcement of the Regulations. Despite these challenges, on 14th January 2023, CCC will be celebrating a decade of existence. If so, how has CCC enhanced the enforcement of the regional competition laws and what lessons can young and emerging regional competition regimes (RCRs) learn from CCC? In this blog article, we discuss the strategies that CCC has adopted in building its authority and strengthening cooperation with NCAs and other stakeholders in the enforcement of the COMESA regional competition law.
This article highlights the benefits the CSME region enjoys for having a regional competition framework and the challenges faced by the Commission in meeting its mandate. It also presents some strategies which the Commission used to overcome these challenges.
The Competition Authority of Botswana, the National Energy Regulator of South Africa and the University of Johannesburg’s Centre for Competition, Regulation and Economic Development are honoured to host the 5th Annual Competition and Economic Regulation (ACER) Week, Southern Africa.