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South Africa: Competition Commission to investigate schoolbook price-fixing

 |  August 29, 2018

The Competition Commission is set to investigate whether the Publishers’ Association of South Africa (PASA) and its 91 members have been fixing book prices.

“Commissioner[Tembinkosi Bonakele] received information pointing to the fact that the association and its members who are publishers‚ book importers and sellers of books to government departments‚ educational institutions‚ retailers among others‚ may have been involved in fixing prices of books in contravention of the Competition Act‚” the commission said in a statement.

The commission said the price-fixing arrangement “appears to be historic in the industry dating back as early as [the] 1980s”.

More recently, in 2017, the department of basic education’s continued failure to deliver school textbooks on time in the province prompted the SA Human Rights Commission (SAHRC) to consider legal action against government.

“The SAHRC has established, through its Limpopo provincial office, that several schools in the Limpopo province have not received their textbooks on time as ordered by the high court and upheld by the Supreme Court of Appeal,” the SAHRC’s commissioner for basic education, Andre Gaum, said at the time.

Full Content: The Citizen

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