ECONOMY

Poultry cartel exposed

The Competition Commission has found extensive evidence of a cartel operated by 10 large poultry farms, as well as their official association. According to sources, the members of the cartel, which was formed after the abolition of price ceilings in 1996, fixed wholesale prices throughout the distribution chain, coordinated the allocation of clientele among them and had even set up an informal system for monitoring the illicit deals.

The commission acted on information of an impending coordinated wave of price hikes in the industry a few months ago. The cartel is thought to have controlled about 80 percent of the market. The commission will discuss the affair in its plenary session in October.