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Welcome amendments to the COMESA merger control regime

Kyriakos Fountoukakos and Susan Black, Herbert Smith Freehills, April 2015

See Kyriakos Fountoukakos's resume See Susan Black's resume See Rebecca Major's resume

The supranational merger control regime of the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa ("COMESA") has been fully operational since 14 January 2013. The COMESA merger control regime is largely governed by the COMESA Competition Regulations 2004 ("Regulations") and is enforced by the COMESA Competition Commission ("CCC").

On 26 March 2015, significant amendments to the COMESA merger control regime were adopted by the COMESA Council of Ministers. They entered into force on the same day.

The amendments to the COMESA merger control regime draw upon the experience acquired during the 2 years of application of the initial regime. They are welcome in that they address some of the issues that the initial regime left open (for an overview of these issues, please see our previous client briefing available here). In particular, the amendments have introduced reasonable notification thresholds and decreased the amount of filing fees.

In this client briefing we take a look at the recent amendments to the COMESA merger control regime, and provide views as to their impact for firms doing business in Eastern and Southern Africa.

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