Designation of Petroleum Industry Extended

Department of Economic Development

The economic development department has extended the period of designation of the petroleum industry in terms of section 10 (3)(b)(iv) of the Competition Act.

The section deals with exemptions from Chapter 2 of the act on prohibited practices.

The designation, published in Government Gazette 41542, applies until 30 September 2018.

Meanwhile, the department has indicated, during a briefing in parliament on its strategic plan, that cabinet will review the Draft Competition Amendment Bill in 2018 following submissions received during the consultation phase.

The draft bill designed to address concentration and drive transformation in the local economy was published for comment in December 2017.

The proposed legislation also seeks to clarify and improve the determination of prohibited practices relating to restrictive horizontal practices, abuse of dominance and price discrimination.

The draft bill also aims to amend the Competition Act, 1998, so as to introduce provisions that:

•    improve the regulation of mergers;
•    provide for the promotion of competition and economic transformation through addressing the de-concentration of markets;
•    protect and stimulate small businesses and firms owned and controlled by historically disadvantaged persons and their growth;
•    to protect and promote decent employment and employment security;
•    to facilitate the effective participation of the national Executive within proceedings contemplated in the Competition Act, 1998;
•    to empower the Commission to act in accordance with the results of a market inquiry;
•    to amend the process by which the Competition Commission may initiate market inquiries;
•    to empower the Minister to initiate market enquiries;
•    to promote greater efficiency regarding the conduct of market inquiries;
•    to clarify and foster greater efficiency regarding the determination of confidential information and access to confidential information;
•    to promote the administrative efficiency of the Competition Commission and Competition Tribunal;
•    and provide for matters connected therewith.

The department also pointed out that implementation of the youth employment and green economy accords will be assessed in 2018.

Sabinet Cape Town Office