CCP: (CCP imposes Rs 100 million fine on Pakistan Poultry Association for cartelization)

March 1, 2016 Off By Web Desk

ISLAMABAD: The Competition Commission of Pakistan (CCP) has issued an order imposing a fine of Rs 100 million on the Pakistan Poultry Association (PPA) for price fixing of poultry products, in violation of Section 4 of the Competition Act, 2010.

The order was passed by a bench comprising Ms. Vadiyya Khalil, Chairperson, Dr. Shahzad Ansar, Member Office of Fair Trade and Advocacy, and Ikram Ul Haque Qureshi, Member Cartels and Trade Abuses, and Legal.

The order disposes of the proceedings arising out of the show cause notice issued to PPA after CCP took notice of a series of advertisements published in various daily newspapers by PPA regarding prices of: live broiler chicken; broiler chicken meat (collectively boiler chicken) and chicken eggs from 6th Oct, 2015 to 12th Oct, 2015, says a press statement issued here on Wednesday.

The order finds that by notifying the prices of poultry products under the banner of the association, PPA has taken an anti-competitive decision in violation of Section 4(1) read with Section 4(2) (a) of the Competition Act.

It further states that PPA’s actions have the potential of influencing pricing trends in the market and manipulating the behaviour of market players.

The order reiterates that while trade associations play an important role in the development of industries, exchange of any commercially sensitive information, including mere discussion of pricing-related matters is strictly prohibited under the Competition Act.

It is pertinent to recall that PPA was previously fined an amount of PKR 50 million by the CCP for violation of the same provisions of the Act in August 2010. It was also severely reprimanded from engaging in price-related discussions, and warned that the Commission would not take a lenient approach towards anti-competitive behaviour in the future.

In view of the current violation, CCP, while imposing a cumulative penalty of PKR 100 Million on PPA, has further directed it to cease and desist from advertising the rates of poultry products, and to submit a compliance report with the Registrar of CCP.