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JOHANNESBURG - South Africa's Black Business Council (BBC) said on Wednesday plans by the Competition Commission to cut back on existing and future investigations and inquiries were deeply concerning.

The Commission last week said it would suspend some of its key inquiries because of a shortage of funds and would cut plans for new investigations in order keep within its operational running budget.

The BBC said this was worrying as the Commission was an integral statutory body that played a key role in investigating and evaluating business practices in the country.

BBC president Sandile Zungu called on the government to support the Commission in order to open the market for new players and create jobs, ensuring that small- and medium-sized enterprises had an equitable opportunity to participate in the economy.

Zungu said the role of independent competition regulatory authorities such as the Competition Commission was integral in the development and transformation of the economy and their advocacy capacity should never be compromised.

"It's imperative that for the greater good of the citizens of the country, that government through the Treasury establish a sustainable resolution to the current situation at the Competition Commission to ensure that the statutory body is well resourced through relevant stakeholders to continue its regulatory duties – essential in spurring black business, job creation and increasing the ownership stakes of historically disadvantaged persons," Zungu said. 

- African News Agency (ANA)