The suspension of operations as a result of government measures towards curbing Covid-19, should not be encouraged. Competition agencies must remain vigilant in protecting vulnerable consumers with no bargaining power from unscrupulous businesses. Further, while cartel conduct is per se illegal, it is the responsibility of the competition agencies to provide the business community with guidance on how they can operate during the crisis and at the same time comply with competition law. Covid-19 has also proved to us that, competition agencies need to reinvent their enforcement including the adoption of digital technologies such as artificial intelligence and investing in the security and privacy concerns of the people. Integration of technology is no longer a choice.
Aside from price-related breaches of competition law, horizontal coordination measures are now put in place by businesses to provide essential services to consumers in order to keep the economy afloat. Such coordination, which ordinarily raises competition red flags, is now temporarily permitted in some jurisdictions, especially as the economy now runs on a skeletal basis. As the exigencies of the pandemic seem to have upended market practice, one wonders if competition law rules are fit for this perilous time and ponders on the intervention of the Nigerian Federal Competition and Consumer Protection Authority (“The Commission”) in the situation.
Recent years have seen a remarkable upturn in scholarship on copyright in Africa in general and its intersection with competition law and policy frameworks in particular. Multi-Sided Music Platforms and the Law takes the discussion further through a detailed examination of global platforms such as YouTube, SoundCloud and Facebook and the profound impact these firms have on the creative sectors and the economy more broadly of developing countries.
The Commercial Law Research Network Nigeria (CLRNN) was established in 2019 to create a platform through which the suitability of reforms to the commercial law in Nigeria can be critically discussed. CLRNN creates a collaborative environment in which researchers with expert knowledge of Nigeria’s domestic and international contexts can engage on various commercial law subjects germane to Nigeria’s economy.
To finalise our International Women’s Day symposium on scholarship by women, this post highlights some women working on International Economic Law (IEL) that the editorial team put together in the last couple of days. This post is therefore by no means intended to be exhaustive. We encourage our readers to add to our list. Next year with more time, we hope to have an even more extensive list of women working in IEL.
We write to thank our readers and contributors for a really productive 2019.
Colonial powers reshaped the economies to extract resources for export to the metropole while creating an import dependency for consumables. This legacy transformed these economies and their indigenous institutions and power. Locals were brutalized and deprived of meaningful economic opportunities.
We are pleased to announce that the 9th PEPA/SIEL conference will take place on 17-19 May 2020 at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem Faculty of Law, in Jerusalem.
The Nigerian Federal Competition and Consumer Protection Act (FCCPA), which is modelled after the South African Competition Act, established two institutions for the purposes of enforcing its provisions. These are the Federal Competition and Consumer Protection Commission (FCCPC) and the Competition and Consumer Protection Tribunal (CCPT). It saddled them with the responsibility of promoting competition in the Nigerian market by eliminating monopolies, prohibiting abuse of a dominant position and penalizing other restrictive trade and business practices.
Making Markets Work for Africa is a courageous attempt to bring order to the sparse and often chaotic studies of competition law and policy in Africa. The reader is immediately struck by the logical style of the authors followed by the skilful presentation of the often-esoteric issues of competition law across the different chapters of the book. The text also serves as a well-timed primer on African competition law which may be useful for the reform of existing competition regimes or the introduction of new ones.