• The Commission resolved 1, 2 4 8 cases involving 1,617 provisions.
• An amount of K1, 177,790. 36 was recovered in refunds.
• The total amount recovered was K2, 140,196. 22.
Competition and Consumer Protection Commission (CCPC) has disclosed that it recovered over K1 million in refunds while K962, 405 was recovered in replacements, repairs or re-performance of services in the first of 2021 resulting from consumer complaints.
Giving CCPC’s Performance update for the first half of 2021, Commission Executive Director Chilufya Sampa said the Commission resolved 1, 2 4 8 cases involving 1,617 provisions.
Mr. Sampa stated that K2, 140,196 was the total amount recovered which is the value of goods and services consumers would have lost due to unfair trade practices.
“In the first half of the year 2021, the Commission resolved 1, 2 4 8 cases involving 1,617 provisions. An amount of K1, 177,790.36 was recovered in refunds and K962, 405.86 was recovered in replacements, repairs or re performance of services. The total amount recovered was K2, 140,196.22 which is the value of goods and services consumers would have lost. The Commission observed that the majority of consumer complaints were from the insurance, retail, microfinance, ICT and banking sectors which accounted for 88% of the cases.”
“In service sectors like insurance, banking, microfinance and ICT, most cases had to do with provision of unsuitable services and misrepresentations, such as failure to pay maturity values for insurance policies or unsolicited deductions from consumer’s salaries or bank accounts. In this regard, the Commission has continued to collaborate with the Pensions and Insurance Authority (PIA), Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), Bank of Zambia (BoZ), Drug Enforcement Commission (DEC) and the Ministry of Commerce, Trade and Industry (MCTI) in resolving complaints in the financial sector,” Mr. Sampa revealed.
And Mr. Sampa said the Commission has also received a number of complaints concerning fraudulent and unregistered money saving and investment schemes some of which were advertised on social media.
He added that CCPC is working with BoZ and DEC on the schemes.
Meanwhile, Mr. Sampa revealed that there has been a reduction in the number of merger applications, as the value of merger investments in the period under review is over 400 million US dollars, with over 4,187 direct and indirect jobs created and over 30,344 direct and indirect jobs maintained.
He attributed the decline to disruptions and uncertainties in the country’s business environment and the global economy at large, due to the Covid-19 Pandemic.
“In the first half of 2021, there were 46 merger applications received and assessed by the Commission as compared to 51 mergers during the same period in 2020. This represents a 9.8% reduction in the number of merger applications and assessments during the first half of 2021. Despite this reduction, Zambia continues to be a desired investment destination and merger regulation governed by the competition law plays an important role in contributing to Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) flows in the economy,” he said.
According to Mr. Sampa, the merger investments cover broad sectors of the economy from services such as ICT, energy, wholesale and retail, manufacturing, agriculture and mining, while other sectors include real estate, banking and finance, insurance, construction, transport, tourism and livestock.
He further disclosed that in the period under review, CCPC handled 14 Cartel cases which were mainly from the agriculture, manufacturing and construction sectors, while four cases in the manufacturing and agriculture sectors were closed with ten 10 still under investigation.