Senwes to appeal ruling on grain storage

18 September 2009|In News and Media

The Western Cape High Court will on Tuesday hear agricultural services company Senwes’ appeal against the Competition Tribunal’s ruling earlier this year that it had contravened the Competition Act when it instituted a ‘margin squeeze’ in the grain storage and grain trading markets in 2003, says a report in Business Report. Simon Roberts, the commission’s chief economist, said Senwes had denied grain traders the ability to make a margin by denying them the benefit of yearly storage discounts in its silos. ‘It’s about Senwes’ conduct as a provider of infrastructure as well as a trader in the market,’ he said. Senwes supplies rivals that it competes with in a downstream market, in a way that prevents its rivals from making an economically viable margin, according to the ruling. The tribunal found that a fine would not be suitable as it was a first-time contravention, but it recommended that a Senwes employee, who admitted during his evidence to having perjured himself, be prosecuted. This was the first time the tribunal made such a recommendation.

Business Report

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