The Administrative Court has ruled that the Egyptian Competition Authority (ECA) is the only agency specialised in and entitled to examine monopolistic practices by companies working in the telecommunications sector. The ruling comes in response to a lawsuit filed by Mobinil (Orange).
The chairperson of ECA, Mona El-Garf, praised the ruling in a report issued on Wednesday by the ECA. “Monopolistic practices can limit competition in all economic sectors, and these are the practices that the authority is specialised in looking into,” El-Garf said.
According to the Competition Protection Law, the authority’s role does not contradict with the role of the National Telecommunications Regulatory Authority (NTRA), which looks into the regulatory and technical measures within the telecommunications sector without the intrusion of the ECA. This makes the ECA’s role important in revealing monopolistic practices in the market. The process ensures integration between the different agencies in the state, according to the report.
The court has based its ruling on the previously issued verdict by the Cairo Economic Court in case No. 721 of 2013, supported by appeal No. 111 of 2014, which fined the legal representative of Mobinil for not cooperating on data requested by the agency, as an application of Article 22 of the Protection of Competition Law.
Orange attacked the ruling, with the claim that only NTRA is specialised in looking into such issues in the telecommunications sector. The court rejected this claim and the ECA was given authority to examine the practices of every telecommunications company in regards to market competition.