BEEF, JUICE COM­PA­NIES CHARGED FOR ANTI-COM­PET­I­TIVE BE­HAV­IOUR

Swazi Observer - - BUSINESS -

JO­HAN­NES­BURG – A beef sup­plier and a juice maker - have been re­ferred by the Com­pe­ti­tion Com­mis­sion to its Tri­bunal af­ter it was found that they signed agree­ments not to com­pete with each other in con­tra­ven­tion of the com­pe­ti­tion law.

Beef­cor (Pty) Ltd and Cape Fruit Pro­ces­sors (Pty) Ltd (CFP) were charged with divi­sion of mar­kets by al­lo­cat­ing cus­tomers in con­tra­ven­tion of Sec­tion 4(1)(b)(ii) of the Com­pe­ti­tion Act 98 of 1998.

The com­mis­sion’s in­ves­ti­ga­tion re­vealed that Beef­cor and CFP en­tered into user and sup­plier agree­ments which in­cluded that they:

Do not to com­pete with each other in the pro­cess­ing of wet peels and cit­rus peel pulp used to pro­duce live­stock feed (wet peels and cit­rus peel pulp are by-prod­ucts in the pro­duc­tion of fruit juice);

CFP will not sell the wet peels and cit­rus peel pulp to any other en­tity with­out the ex­press writ­ten per­mis­sion of Beef­cor; and

The agree­ment has been in ex­is­tence from at least 2016 and is on­go­ing. This agree­ment con­sti­tutes mar­ket divi­sion by al­lo­cat­ing cus­tomers in con­tra­ven­tion of sec­tion 4(1)(b)(ii) of the Com­pe­ti­tion Act‚ No 89 of 1998‚ as amended‚ the com­mis­sion said.

The com­mis­sion has de­cided to re­fer the mat­ter to the Com­pe­ti­tion Tri­bunal for pros­e­cu­tion and con­firm an or­der that Beef­cor and CFP be li­able to pay an ad­min­is­tra­tive penalty equiv­a­lent to 10 per cent of their re­spec­tive an­nual turnover.

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