Pretoria – Cabinet has taken note of the Competition Commission’s ruling on the merger of Walmart and Massmart, saying that government is looking into the matter based on its merits.
“Cabinet takes note of the ruling by the Competition Tribunal on the Walmart matter and is in full support of the stewardship provided by the three ministers,” Cabinet spokesperson Jimmy Manyi said on Thursday.
At the end of May, the Tribunal decided to allow the US retail giant to merge with Massmart with conditions. Walmart will acquire 51 percent of the South African retailer in a deal worth about R16.5 billion.
The Departments of Economic Development; Trade and Industry; Agriculture Forestry and Fisheries had opposed the merger, arguing it would lead to the loss of jobs as well as put suppliers out of work. Trade unions are also opposing the merger.
Cabinet said it was in full support of the stewardship provided by the departments’ three ministers who are assessing the Tribunal’s ruling.
“Cabinet wants to make it very clear that this specific matter is being dealt with on its own merits. The position government is pursuing on this matter is issue-specific and does not constitute a general government posture on foreign investments.
“Government will continue to act in the public interest and will always conduct itself within the parameters provided by the law and the Constitution of this country,” it said.
The Tribunal is expected to give reasons for the decision on or before 29 June 2011. – BuaNews