The trajectory of South Africa’s industrial development has centered on the mining, metals and energy value chains, which has historically been characterised by very strong intra-sectoral relationships. The mining and basic metals industries were beneficiaries of favourable electricity tariffs, investment and logistics support aimed at promoting its competitiveness.
Over the past two decades the global industrial landscape has been reshaped by profound structural and technological transformations. The rise of new industrial powers, China in particular, has led to the restructuring of global production systems and the reorganisation of production cycles, as well as changes in global trade patterns.
The Competition amendment Bill has sparked debate on the role of competition in delivering increased participation and economic transformation. This is not surprising given that the nature of competitive rivalry and the identity of market participants are central to the quality of growth that can be achieved.
Agreeing upon and sustaining cartel outcomes requires some form of communication between competitors. The role of information exchange in dampening competition or facilitating cartel conduct is a contentious topic and one that the Competition Commission continues to face as firms find more creative and sophisticated ways to collude.