Knesset Adopts Anti-trust Law; Govt. to Establish Control Office

A watered-down anti-trust and anti-cartel law, supported only by Mapai and the left-wing parties, was approved today by the Knesset, Israel’s Parliament.

The other parties, abstaining on the vote, protested various exemptions in the measure. The new law permits price agreements and monopolistic practices in firms growing and marketing farm products, if one or more of the companies are owned by a labor union, or if all companies involved are owned or controlled by the Government.

There is no outright ban on all cartels and monopolies in the measure which provides only for Government control and inspection. The law assumes each restrictive practice will be judged on its merit since some may be beneficial to the Israel economy. All restrictive practices, however, must be reported to a newly-established office of the Commissioner for Restrictive Trade Practices.

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