Potential American investors awaiting South Africa's decision to allow Wal-Mart to buy majority share of Massmart Holdings, looking at deal as a gauge of how U.S. businesses will be treated in South Africa, says U.S. Chamber of Commerce official

LOS ANGELES , February 20, 2012 () – The upcoming decision from South Africa's Competition Tribunal to approve Wal-Mart Stores Inc.’s bid for a controlling share in Massmart Holdings is of interest to potential American investors, says s U.S. Chamber of Commerce official, Fin24 reported Feb. 17.

The Tribunal, which is responsible for consumer protection and avoiding monopolies, is weighing an appeal by agencies and unions opposed to Wal-Mart’s bid.

The decision is being watched by American businesses interested in how Wal-Mart is treated in South Africa, said Myron Brilliant, senior VP of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce's international division.

With recently announced plans for large infrastructure projects in South Africa, American companies are keen to participate if they can be reassured that business in the country will not be an uphill battle, according to Brilliant. He noted that several American businesses in South Africa have successfully resolved management-labor issues.

Increased trade between the two countries could stimulate job growth. South Africa’s 23.9% unemployment at the close of 2011 signaled significant growth. In the U.S., January unemployment was 8.3%.

The primary source of this article is Fin 24, Johannesburg, South Africa, Feb. 17, 2012.

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