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Archives January 2023

Notice of an investigation into alleged restrictive practices in the medical sector by CIMAS Medical Aid Society in Zimbabwe

IT is hereby notified in terms of section 28 of the Competition Act [Chapter 14:28] that the Competition and Tariff Commission (hereinafter called the “Commission”) has commenced an investigation into an alleged restrictive practice, as defined in terms of section 2 of the Act, by Cimas Medical Aid Society. Section 28 of the Act empowers the Commission to undertake an investigation into any restrictive practice which the Commission has reason to believe exists or may come into existence.

It is alleged that Cimas Medical Aid Society (“Cimas”) deregistered Family Medical Clinic from the New Health 263 direct payment system. It is further alleged that, apart from the deregistration of Family Medical Clinic from the New Health 263 direct payment system, Cimas is neither reimbursing its members nor honouring claims for treatment of its members at Family Medical Clinic. Deregistration of Family Medical Clinic from New Health 263 direct payment system resulted in Cimas members having to pay cash for treatment at Family Medical Clinic. The Commission established that Cimas is a medical aid society which also operates a clinic in Masvingo, Cimas Clinic. Cimas is alleged to be indirectly referring its members to its own facility, Cimas Clinic.

The Commission has preliminary concerns that the alleged practice may result in members’ choice of healthcare being limited to Cimas Clinic and other healthcare providers preferred by Cimas where their medical aid cards are accepted. The practice may also create barriers into entry and expansion of Family Medical Clinic and other deregistered healthcare providers who may not compete fairly with healthcare providers that are paid by Cimas in real time using the New Health 263 direct payment system. The alleged practice may prima facie constitute a restrictive practice as defined in terms of section 2 of the Act.

It should be noted that the commencement of an investigation neither pre-supposed that the conduct being investigated is anti-competitive not that Cimas has violated the provisions of the Act. The Commission will, in accordance with the provisions of section 28 of the Act conduct an investigation in the medical sector focusing on the provision of medical aid services to determine whether the alleged practices directly or indirectly restrict competition.

Any interested person may submit written representations to the Commission stating how they have been affected by the issues under investigation, not later than 14 days from the date of publication of this Notice. Emails may be sent to and/or or hard copies submitted to the Director, Competition and Tariff Commission, 23 Broadlands Road, Emerald Hill, Harare, Zimbabwe.

Any further enquires or clarification on any aspect of the Commission’s investigation may be directed to Mr. T. Mawundike, on Tel (+263) 773385035 or (+263) 853127-32, or email:

CTC receives 7 merger applications… sets tough conditions for Bikita Minerals, Sinomine deal

THE Competition and Tariff Commission (CTC) received seven merger applications for approval during the third quarter of last year from the manufacturing, finance, insurance, agriculture and mining sectors.

These transactions, contained in the latest CTC report, include Lafarge Cement Zimbabwe’s purchase by Fossil Mines, the acquisition of Ndoro Microbank Bank by InnBucks, the purchase of Fifty-Four Plymouth Road by Surjay, and the purchase of Macro Enterprises by Crail Enterprises.

The commission also received merger applications involving the purchase of Charles Stewart Day Old Chicks by Shanksville Farming, the purchase of Annunaki Investments by Shanksville Farming and the purchase of Bilboes Gold by Caledonia Mining Corporation.

The acquisition of Bikita Minerals by Sinomine (Hong Kong) Rare Metals Resources Co, and the indirect acquisition of Zuva Petroleum by Tristar Transport LLC were also completed during the period under review.

The commission granted conditional approval for Sinomine (Hong Kong) Rare Metals Resources Co to acquire Bikita Minerals during the quarter. The commission was informed in February 2022 that Africa Minerals (Afmin) and Amzim Minerals Limited (Amzim) would be fully acquired.

Afmin and Amzim control 70,3% and 29,7%, respectively, of the issued share capital of Zimbabwe-based lithium mining business Bikita Minerals (Bikita Minerals). Sinomine is a wholly owned subsidiary of Sinomine Resources Group Co (Sinomine Group), a Chinese provider of mining services.

Through its subsidiaries, it engages in geotechnical services, the development of mineral properties, and the exploitation of rare light mineral resources (lithium, cesium and rubidium).

The CTC set various requirements before approving the US$180 million transaction between Bikita Minerals and Sinomine (Hong Kong) Rare Metals Resources Co.

It mandated that, if it is economically feasible, Bikita Minerals, its subsidiaries, affiliates, and successors-in-title sell lithium concentrates to any user who may be available in Zimbabwe on non-discriminatory terms and conditions.

Additionally, the company was instructed to commit to producing high-purity lithium from lithium concentrates within five years of obtaining the commission’s ruling.

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