The East African Community Competition Authority (the EACCA) has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Tanzania’s Fair Competition Commission (FCC) aimed at strengthening cooperation between the two authorities in the advancement of competition policy and law in the East African Community (EAC).
The MoU signed in Arusha, Tanzania will also ensure that the implementation of EACCA and FCC mandates and activities enhance regional integration and facilitate cross-border trade.The MoU sets out modalities through which the two institutions will cooperate and coordinate their activities in regard to cross-border competition and consumer protection matters in the region.
In addition, the MoU facilitates information sharing particularly during joint investigations, which shall be prioritised so as to safeguard the competition process and protect consumers in the region, while respecting each other respective laws and policies. Further, the MoU provides for cooperation and coordination in carrying out market inquiries and studies and a platform to pursue technical assistance and capacity building, including staff training.
Speaking at the the signing ceremony, the EACCA Registrar, Ms. Lilian Mukoronia, said in order to support the regional EAC strategy of developing a vibrant competitive Common Market that works for all citizens of East Africa, it is important for EACCA to work with FCC in regulating competition to enhance intra-regional trade and foster sustainable economic growth in the region.
“Today, while respecting our jurisdictional independence, our two institutions are committing to collaborate in effectively implementing the East African Community Competition Act, 2006, which is aligned to the objectives of the EAC Customs Union and Common Market Protocols, through which among others, protect market participants from anti- competitive business practices. With the signing of the MoU, we look forward to engaging in more comprehensive, profound and fruitful exchanges and collaboration with our counterpart,” said Ms. Mukoronia.
On his part Mr. William Erio, the Director General of the FCC said the United Republic of Tanzania and the EAC share an unbreakable bond that stems from the same common roots, culture and economic inter-connectedness.
“I commit FCC’s determination to work hand in hand with the EACCA to bring to life the cooperation initiatives outlined in the MoU, which will help bring ample development opportunities for businesses in Tanzania and the region, foster their innovations, and propel them to the forefront of the global market,” said Mr. Erio.
Under the MoU, the two institutions have set up a working group tasked with implementing the prioritised activities through annual work plans. The two Institutions have committed to, among other things, review various complementary regulations and guidelines to ensure they are fit for implementation.