OCE - Oceana Group Limited - Consent agreement concluded with The Competition
OCEANA GROUP LIMITED
(Incorporated in the Republic of South Africa)
(Registration number: 1939/001730/06)
JSE share code: OCE
NSX share code: OCG
CONSENT AGREEMENT CONCLUDED WITH THE COMPETITION COMMISSION
Following an investigation into the small pelagic fishery by the Competition
Commission (hereinafter "Commission"), Oceana Group Limited and its subsidiary
Oceana Brands Limited (collectively hereinafter "Oceana") have accepted
responsibility for certain contraventions of the Competition Act No. 89 of 1998,
as amended ("the Competition Act").
Accordingly, Oceana has agreed to pay an administrative penalty amounting to
R34.75 million representing 5% of its affected turnover derived from its pelagic
fishing operations in South Africa in the 2010 financial year. This is in full
and final settlement and is subject to confirmation by the Competition Tribunal.
Oceana Group CEO, Francois Kuttel, said, "Oceana has co-operated fully with the
Commission during its investigation and whilst we deeply regret the Commission's
findings, we acknowledge that this conduct occurred, with the exception of the
Sea Harvest matter.
The bulk of the penalty relates to open negotiations which were in place for the
purposes of compensating skippers, crew and some private boat owners in the
small pelagic fishery for over four decades. Whilst it was technically a
contravention of the Competition Act, we believed this activity was covered by
the exemption relating to collective bargaining.
The remaining infringements were technical in nature and in certain cases, never
implemented. Most importantly, no harm was done in any way to consumers through
any of these infringements.
Two of the contraventions had ceased two years prior to the Commission's
original complaint in July 2008. The others were identified during our
compliance audit as contraventions and the conduct in question was immediately
Oceana respectfully disagrees with the Commission's conclusions regarding the
effect of the Sea Harvest shareholders agreement, given that the Company was not
even aware that the agreement existed until 2010.
Oceana has implemented a comprehensive ongoing Competition Law compliance
programme, consisting of training and education, compliance audits, the
introduction of relevant corporate policies and procedures as well as the
establishment of appropriate monitoring and reporting mechanisms.
Oceana operates responsibly and ethically in strict accordance with the laws of
the country and the King III principles of good corporate governance.
9 May 2012
The Standard Bank of South Africa Limited
Namibia Old Mutual Investment Services (Namibia) Proprietary Limited
Date: 09/05/2012 13:55:01 Produced by the JSE SENS Department.
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