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USD38, 300,000 handled in 2019 merger investments.

The Competition and Consumer Protection Commission (CCPC) has disclosed that the approximate value in Merger investments handled in 2019 was thirty eight million three hundred thousand United States dollars with over 2,000 direct and indirect jobs created.

Speaking during the 2019 end of year media briefing, CCPC Executive Director Chilufya Sampa said “competition law through merger regulation plays an important role in contributing to investment flows in an economy as the 91 mergers recorded represent a 3.5 % increase of mergers from the previous year.”

Mr. Sampa further said the Commission observed investments in the services sector, ICT, Energy, Wholesale and Retail, Manufacturing, Agriculture and Mining, while other sectors include Real Estate, Banking and Finance, Transport, Tourism and Livestock.

“We observe that the 91 mergers recorded in 2019 represent a 3.5 % increase of mergers from the previous year. There is a positive correlation between the number of mergers and investment as mergers can show new players entering the market.”

“The commission has continued to explore ways of reducing the cost of doing business in Zambia in order to encourage investments in the various sectors of the economy. One of the ways has been through the revision of how merger fees are being calculated. The results are already being seen with the 3.5% increase in the number of mergers recorded in 2019,” Mr. Sampa stated.

He added that Zambia has continued to be a desired investment destination as there is recognition of the significant role that competition law plays in a liberalized economy in relation to investments.
Meanwhile, Mr. Sampa said the commission resolved 2,470 Consumer Protection cases as compared to 2,156 in 2018, adding that a lot of consumer complaints were from the retail, insurance, banking, microfinance, transport and ICT sectors with 1,066, 527, 223, 177, 131, and 128 cases respectively.

He said the Commission envisaged to reduce the cost of doing business this year with the aim to increase investments and job creation by making merger regulation easy and investor friendly.
And Mr. Sampa said Cartels remain a source of great concern to the economy adding that several tools to clump down on this conduct have been put in place.

“Let the cartel members out there know that it’s a matter of time before their conduct is uncovered. In 2019 alone, the commission uncovered 55 suspected cartel cases and once investigations are concluded, the commission will send a strong signal by prosecuting both the companies involved and their directors in their individual capacities,” he stated.

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