Video | Agriculture | Confidence | Economy | Energy | Employment | Finance | Media | Property | RBNZ | Science | SOEs | Tax | Technology | Telecoms | Tourism | Transport | Search

 


Com Com commences proceedings relating to AK timber cartel

Commission commences proceedings in relation to Auckland timber cartel

Issued 20 December 2013

Release No. 63           

The Commerce Commission has today filed proceedings in the High Court against Carter Holt Harvey Limited for price fixing in the Auckland timber market.

Carter Holt Harvey entered into an understanding with Fletcher Distribution Limited to fix prices in respect of the supply of structural timber to commercial customers in Auckland, in breach of Part 2 of the Commerce Act. The understanding operated during the latter part of 2012 and early 2013.

The Commission has also filed proceedings against a Carter Holt Harvey manager, Mr Dean Dodds, for his involvement in the understanding.

The Commission has not filed proceedings against Fletcher Distribution Limited as it has been granted immunity in accordance with the Commission’s Cartel Leniency Policy. Fletcher Distribution Limited discovered its involvement in the understanding earlier this year, made the Commission aware of the situation, and cooperated with the Commission’s investigation. 

Carter Holt Harvey and Mr Dodds have also cooperated with the Commission’s investigation, and both have now entered settlements with the Commission in which they admit that their conduct breached the Commerce Act.

A penalty hearing before the High Court will take place in due course. The Commission will be making no further comment at this time. 

Background

Price-fixing

Section 30 of the Commerce Act makes price-fixing agreements between competitors unlawful.
A company that contravenes section 30 may be ordered to pay penalties under section 80 of the Commerce Act. The penalty must not exceed the greater of:

$10 million

or, if it can be readily ascertained and if the Court is satisfied that the contravention occurred in the course of producing commercial gain, three times the value of any commercial gain resulting from the contravention

or, if the commercial gain cannot be readily ascertained, 10% of the turnover of the body corporate and all of its interconnected bodies corporate (if any).

Enforcement options open to the Commerce Commission

The Commerce Commission uses a range of enforcement tools to resolve issues under the Commerce Act ranging from warnings and settlements through to litigation.  The Commission’s Enforcement Response Guidelines explain what enforcement responses are available to the Commission, and what factors are taken into account when deciding which response to use.  The Commission’s Enforcement Response Guidelines can be viewed at http://www.comcom.govt.nz/the-commission/commission-policies/enforcement-response-guidelines/

Cartel Leniency Policy

The Commission operates a Cartel Leniency Policy, which offers individuals or businesses involved in a cartel the opportunity to be granted conditional immunity from Commission prosecution. The Commission’s Cartel Leniency Policy can be viewed at www.comcom.govt.nz/the-commission/commission-policies/cartel-leniency-policy/cartel-leniency-policy-and-process-guidelines/

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines

 

Power Outages, Roads Close: Easter Storm Moving Down Country

The NZ Transport Agency says storm conditions at the start of the Easter break are making driving hazardous in Auckland and Northland and it advises people extreme care is needed on the regions’ state highways and roads... More>>

ALSO:

Houses (& Tobacco) Lead Inflation: CPI Up 0.3% In March Quarter

The consumers price index (CPI) rose 0.3 percent in the March 2014 quarter, Statistics New Zealand said today. Higher tobacco and housing prices were partly countered by seasonally cheaper international air fares, vegetables, and package holidays. More>>

ALSO:

Notoriously Reliable Predictions: Budget To Show Rise In Full-Time Income To 2018: English

This year’s Budget will forecast wage increases through to 2018 amounting to a $10,500 a year increase in average full time earnings over six years to $62,200 a year, says Finance Minister Bill English in a speech urging voters not to “put all of this at risk” by changing the government. More>>

ALSO:

Prices Up, Volume Down: March NZ House Sales Drop 10% As Loan Curbs Bite

New Zealand house sales dropped 10 percent in March from a year earlier as the Reserve Bank’s restrictions on low-equity mortgages continue to weigh on sales of cheaper property. More>>

ALSO:

Scoop Business: Chorus To Appeal Copper Pricing Judgment

Chorus will appeal a High Court ruling upholding the Commerce Commission’s determination setting the regulated prices on the telecommunications network operator’s copper lines. More>>

ALSO:

Earlier:

Cars: Precautionary Recalls Announced For Toyota Vehicles

Toyota advises that a number of its New Zealand vehicles are affected by a series of precautionary global recalls. Toyota New Zealand General Manager Customer Services Spencer Morris stressed that the recalls are precautionary. More>>

ALSO:

'Gardening Club': Air Freight Cartel Nets Almost $12 Million In Penalties

The High Court in Auckland has today ordered Swiss company Kuehne + Nagel International AG to pay a penalty of $3.1 million plus costs for breaches of the Commerce Act. Kuehne + Nagel’s penalty brings the total penalties ordered in this case to $11.95 million ... More>>

ALSO:

Crown Accounts: Revenue Below Projections

Core Crown tax revenue has increased by $1.9 billion (or 5.0%) compared to the same time last year. However this was $1.1 billion less than expected and is reflected across most tax types, continuing the pattern of recent months. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 
 
Computer Power Plus
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Business
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news