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Entry into operation of the Mozambican Competition Regulatory Authority

We hereby inform the business community and other interested parties that the Competition Regulatory Authority (Autoridade Reguladora da Concorrência – ARC) has recently become operational. Mozambique has approved in 2013, the Competition Law, by means of Law no. 10/2013, of 11 April and its respective Regulation, through Decree no. 97/2014, of 31 January, and although this legislation has been in force, its implementation was still pending the entry into operation of the ARC. ARC's Statutes were approved in 2014 by Decree no. 37/2014, of 01 August, and amended by Decree no. 96/2014, of 31 December. These Statutes have undergone new amendments recently through Decree no. 6/2021, of 23 February.

From the contacts made with ARC we understand that this Authority is still finalizing its internal organization and not all of its divisions are fully operational. Currently the ARC is addressing merger operations of companies which meet the criteria established by law for mandatory prior notification to the ARC. In relation to this matter, we note that the preparation of complementary rules for the implementation of competition legislation is underway, in particular, we had access to the Regulation of Notification Forms for Merger Operations of Companies, approved by Resolution no. 1/2021, which approves the procedures and forms for notification of the following merger operations: (i) mergers; (ii) creation of a common company or acquisition of joint control; and, (iii) acquisition of exclusive control of the entirety or part of one or more companies.

It should be noted that the ARC regulations are mandatorily published on its website and in the II Series of the Official Gazette. As we understand, ARC’s website is not yet operational and as per the information obtained from the ARC, they are still coordinating the publication of the Regulation mentioned above in the Official Gazette.

It is important to note that the Competition Law establishes fines for different types of infringements, including for the failure to notify concentrations subject to prior notification. Additionally, other more serious economic consequences may apply to investments or ongoing transactions, which requires that this legislation is known and complied with.

Therefore, it is advisable that the business community obtains the relevant advice in order to ensure compliance with the obligations and limitations provided under the competition legislation in force.