Relying on competition policy – and specifically provisions against excessive pricing – to prosecute price gouging comes with significant challenges. In this op-ed, Prof Willem Boshoff, co-director of the CCLE, unpacks some of these challenges.
Prof Willem Boshoff, Co-Director of the CCLE, recently participated in a webinar with Marylla Govender from Compliance Online to discuss excessive pricing. The focus was on the new excessive pricing regulations. For a recording of the event, please contact Nino Haasbroek at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Assessing excessive pricing during the Covid-19 crisis will be challenging. Based on the regulations published last week in the Government Gazette, South African competition authorities will compare prices during the period of national disaster to prices over December 2019 to February 2020 when determining excessive pricing. In this comment, Prof Willem Boshoff of the CCLE argues that such a short benchmark period raises challenges to understanding how the price of a product 'normally' responds to demand and cost factors. You can access the link here.
On 19 March 2020, the Minister of Trade and Industry published regulations in the Government Gazette, pertaining to the pricing and supply of certain consumer and medical products and services during the Covid-19 national disaster period. Some of the regulations relate to the Competition Act’s provisions on excessive pricing. In this short opinion piece, Prof Willem Boshoff provides a high-level economics commentary. You can access the link here.
This year the Department of Economics at Stellenbosch University is celebrating its 100th birthday. Over the week of 5-10 October a range of events are planned, which will showcase the breadth and depth of the Department’s research expertise and social impact. As part of the celebrations, the CCLE will be hosting a colloquium on South African competition policy on Saturday 10 October. The CCLE co-directors, Prof Willem Boshoff and Prof Philip Sutherland, will be joined by CCLE affiliates Prof Nicola Theron, Extraordinary Professor in the Department, and Prof Liberty Mncube, Honorary Professor in the Department. For more information on the centenary, visit: www.econcentenary.com
The CCLE now invites applications from prospective PhD candidates from South Africa and other countries outside of Africa to apply for a three-year scholarship for full-time study towards a PhD in the Department of Economics at Stellenbosch University. In particular, the CCLE is interested in candidates wishing to pursue doctoral research with the following theme: Econometrics and statistical learning techniques for detection of anti-competitive behaviour and estimation of associated damages The scholarship application process is administered via the Graduate School of Economic and Management Sciences of Stellenbosch University (GEM). Successful candidates must pass the GEM selection process and this institution (and not the CCLE) will make the final award decisions. In the absence of good applications, GEM may not award any scholarship on a CCLE-related topic. The application process and criteria are explained and application documents are available at http://www.sun.ac.za/english/faculty/economy/gem/gem-scholars/prospective. Prior to completing the application, prospective candidates are requested to contact Prof Willem Boshoff, co-director of the CCLE and the designated supervisor for prospective doctoral candidates, to discuss whether the CCLE would be willing to consider their application. Due to the nature of the topic, candidates are expected to have excellent marks in graduate econometrics/statistics/mathematics from reputable institutions, in addition to the other requirements [...]