Press Release

John_snook

ACCC NEEDS TO EXPEDITE CBH APPEAL - PGA

2011-07-21

The Pastoralists and Graziers Association has criticised the decision by CBH Group to appeal the final decision by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) to revoke the exclusive dealing notification for Grain Express, labelling it as another attempt to protect its monopoly to the detriment of Western Australian grain producers.

 

PGA Western Graingrowers Chairman John Snooke said CBH Group Chairman Neil Wandel’s claims that ‘Grain Express in its current form provided Western Australian growers, the grain industry and the community with the most efficient grain logistics system possible without substantially lessening competition in the market for grain transportation services’ was misleading to all parties, especially growers.

 

“The decision by the ACCC to revoke the exclusive dealing notification for Grain Express was made following the review of numerous submissions and supporting evidence provided by CBH over the past 12months,” Mr Snooke said.

 

“It is clear that the Australian Government’s consumer and corporate watchdog found that by allowing Grain Express to operate under a regulatory exemption significantly lessened competition, provided limited benefits to growers and only protected the interests of CBH.”

 

“CBH have continually stated that with or with out the authorisation, Grain Express will offer the most competitive grain storage, handling and transport system to growers and industry.”

 

“If this is so true, then why spend hundreds of thousands of dollars of grower’s funds fighting to retain an authorisation, which by their own previous statements, is not needed?”

 

“Claims by CBH that the introduction of competition will lead to increased operating costs, lesser efficiencies and lower value delivery to growers shows that Grain Express is not able to compete in a deregulated market,” Mr Snooke said.

 

“Competition in the grain freight task will lower operating costs, provide a least cost, efficient pathway to port which increases grower profitability and improve the reputation of the WA grains industry.”

 

“Competition establishes the true value of any service,” said Mr Snooke.

 

“The ACCC needs to ensure that this frivolous appeal is immediately expedited and that its ruling which will allow for competition in the transport of grain stands; in order to ensure an efficient and best value haulage system for the benefit of all.”

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