CCPC warns PAZ and MAZ against Price Dictation
The Competition and Consumer Protection Commission (CCPC) has noted with concern that the Poultry Association of Zambia (PAZ) and Millers Association of Zambia (MAZ) have continued to exhibit behavior of agreeing and subsequently announcing the prices of day old chicks and mealie-meal.
This development comes after PAZ and MAZ were cited of having issued media statements in which the duo announced the possible hike in the prices of day old chicks and mealie-meal on 28th and 29th October, 2019 through the Zambia Daily Mail newspaper and Hot Fm radio station respectively.
The Commission has thus found this conduct to be a likely violation of Sections 8 and 9 of the Competition and Consumer Protection (CCPA) Act No. 24 of 2010 which clearly prohibits concerted practices and cartelistic conducts by players and members of the Associations
The Commission also notes that the conduct by the two Associations signals price direction and creates anticipation on the market which is unnecessary and may distort independent decision making on pricing of day old chicks and mealie-meal by players.
And CCPC Director Restrictive Business Practices, Mrs. Naomi Fulaza stated that both PAZ and MAZ have cases before the Competition and Consumer Protection Tribunal (CCPT) relating to similar conduct.
Mrs. Fulaza added that it was sad and unfortunate that Associations such as PAZ and MAZ can continue to make pronouncements related to price increment when the Commission has engaged them on the ills of such conduct. As the Commission would expect that such Associations be in the fore front of ensuring that they and their members abide by the laws of the land.
The Commission has since warned PAZ and MAZ not to engage in conduct that is likely to prevent, distort or restrict competition such as price fixing.
CCPC is mandated by law to enhance Competition and promote Consumer welfare for the growth of the economy and benefit of the people of Zambia.