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Major gas suppliers raided by Competition Commission

By Staff Writer
Yesterday morning, saw five liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) firms across South Africa, subject to dawn raids by the Competition Commission, on suspicion of price fixing.

The five firms are said to be major suppliers in the field of LPG and gas cylinders.

“The Commission is conducting a search and seizure (dawn raid) operation at the premises of African Oxygen Limited, Oryx Oil South Africa (Pty) Ltd, EasiGas (Pty) Ltd and the Liquefied Petroleum Gas Safety Association of Southern Africa (LPG Association) in Gauteng and KayaGas (Pty) Ltd, as well as Totalgaz Southern Africa (Pty) Ltd in the Western Cape,” said the Commission.

This investigation is said to be based on the alleged price fixing and deposit fee allegations for gas cylinders, and is reportedly unrelated to the market inquiry that is also underway.

According to a report, the commission has concerns that the division has displayed “features that prevent, distort or restrict competition.”

The raid was said to have seized all documents and electronic data from these companies, and will reportedly be analysed to determine whether there has been an infringement of the Competition Act.

The commission, in the form of commissioner, Tembinkosi Bonakele, revealed: “The Commission believes that the information that will be obtained from today’s operation will enable the Commission to determine whether or not the firms have indeed engaged in collusive conduct. However, as part of any investigation, we also wish to urge anyone, be it business or individuals with further information to come forward and assist the Commission in concluding this investigation.”
 

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