Dominance of Takealot among issues to be investigated by Competition Commission

Asia's Tech News Daily

© Provided by CapeTalk

The Covid-19 pandemic gave a huge boost to e-commerce and focused attention on the question of fair competition online.

In May, the Competition Commission launched its online market inquiry, officially known as the Online Intermediation Platforms Market Inquiry (OIPMI).

Virtual public hearings are set to take place from 2-19 November 2021.

RELATED: Takealot, UberEats… Competition Commission launches inquiry

A wide range of services are being looked at including online channels for shopping, food delivery, booking travel accommodation and research before big purchases like cars or homes.

Companies to be questioned include Takealot, Airbnb, Mr D and Uber Eats.

© Provided by CapeTalk Takealot. © monticello/123rf.com

The Commission specifically singled out Takealot as an important focus because of its share of the local ecommerce sector and the dual role it plays as an online marketplace and a seller of products, reports MyBroadband.

“The purpose was to ensure that consumers and businesses that use online platforms to reach consumers benefit from competition amongst online platforms, and that small and historically disadvantaged business also get to participate fairly in the online economy” says the Commission.

Bruce Whitfield interviews James Hodge, Chief Economist at the Competition Commission.

We launched the inquiry… on the back of a very rapid acceleration in our online economy following Covid.

James Hodge, Chief Economist – Competition Commission

What we’ve seen globally is many competition authorities are concerned that they’ve acted far too late and now face these almost entrenched monopolies in many lines of business, so this was partly a pro-active measure…

James Hodge, Chief Economist – Competition Commission

… to understand how the South African market is evolving. And it’s beyond e-commerce, it’s also looking at delivery, at online classifieds, app stores and travel accommodation search and booking…

James Hodge, Chief Economist – Competition Commission

We want to assess if we have the conditions in place that this will remain competitive, because having platforms compete and new ones emerge that may innovate… is all part of ensuring that consumers get the benefit of the online economy and online innovation.

James Hodge, Chief Economist – Competition Commission

The flipside of that is that the businesses that use them do [benefit] too.

James Hodge, Chief Economist – Competition Commission

For more detail on the Competition Commission’s approach, listen to the interview below:

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