FAQ On Policy, Reasearch & Advocacy
• Some policies, laws, and statutory instruments which are intended to meet public policy objectives can also reduce the level of competition in markets by:
(i) Preventing firms from competing strongly or reducing their incentive to do so
(ii) Distorting the level playing field by allowing for broad discretion in the application of regulations or establishing regulations that favor certain firms;
(iii) Increasing the costs for consumers to switch to more competitive providers, by reducing their mobility or the amount of information available to them
• The CAK is willing to provide assistance to policymakers who are responsible for the introduction of new regulations at any stage in the policy development process, but recommends that advice is sought at an early stage.
• The objective of the Guideline and Checklist is to provide a general approach for policy-makers in Kenya to screen for and identify the impact of laws and regulations with the potential to restrict competition; and also assist in developing alternative, less restrictive policies that will achieve government policy goals.
• The ARIC guideline is a screening test for the impact of policies, bills or statutory instruments on competition;
• The guideline gives policy makers the opportunity to determine whether a proposed policy, bill, or statutory instrument may have significant impact on competition; and
• The guideline provides a guiding framework of questions to identify regulations or policies which have a detrimental impact on competition in affected markets.
• This framework has been developed by leveraging the objectives of the Competition Authority of Kenya as informed by Vision 2030
• The guideline also builds on assessment frameworks applied by governments internationally, including the UK, the EU, Australia and Mexico;
• The Checklist is based on four simple questions,
(i) What is the impact of the proposal on the number of firms in the market;
(ii) What is their ability and incentives to compete;
(iii) How level is the playing field, and
(iv) What is the impact of the proposal on choice?
• The Checklist provides an initial screening test to identify only whether the regulation in question has the potential to restrict competition.
• It is noteworthy that, the fact that a proposed regulation or policy has a major anti-competitive impact does not necessarily mean that it is ill-conceived.
• The checklist can also be applied to examine the degree to which existing regulations restrict competition.