The importance of competition policy and law in managing foreign direct investment in the Tripartite Free Trade Area - lessons to be learnt from South Africa and the European Union
Whale, Marilyn Heather
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With the coming into force of the Tripartite Free Trade Area (TFTA) and the anticipated increase in trade between TFTA members, the need to regulate multijurisdictional business transactions will likely create an anomaly, namely that transactions will necessarily fall outside of the ambit of TFTA members’ national competition laws, alternatively, result in a duplication of efforts by several competition agencies, followed by conflicting outcomes. This paper considers the relationship between competition policy and law and FDI and the options available for developing a regional competition regulatory framework within the TFTA. The paper reflects on both the benefits of developing a regional competition regulatory framework as well as the possible challenges that underscore such an approach. The primary recommendation made is that the TFTA members should work collaboratively in order to draw on the experiences of both the European Union and South Africa in order to establish a regional competition policy and law framework that adequately enhances FDI within the region as well as provides sufficient cooperation and enforcement when dealing with anticompetitive practices.