The Competition Tribunal has confirmed consent orders against Rand Merchant Bank (RMB) and NWK Limited respectively in relation to their participation in cartel conduct in the physical market for the trading of grain and in the market for the trading of grain on the South African Futures Exchange (SAFEX).
On July 14 2011 the tribunal confirmed two separate consent orders between the Competition Commission and RMB and NWK respectively.
RMB and NWK both engage in the business of trading grain on the SAFEX and in the physical market for the trading of grain. The commission initiated a complaint against RMB and NWK in respect of an agreement which resulted in conduct that amounted to prohibited market allocation. The commission referred the complaint to the tribunal for adjudication.
In terms of the consent orders, RMB and NWK admitted that they had entered into an agreement which could be interpreted as amounting to market division and therefore a contravention of the Competition Act. Both RMB and NWK have agreed to cooperate fully with the commission in relation to the prosecution of the complaint referral. RMB has agreed to pay an administrative penalty of R2.1 million and NWK has agreed to pay an administrative penalty of R520 290. The administrative penalties imposed on the parties constitute 3% of the value of grain traded and affected by the agreement.
For further information on this topic please contact Janine Simpson at Webber Wentzel by telephone (+27 11 530 5000), fax (+27 11 530 5111) or email ([email protected]).
August 25 2011