South Africa’s Competition Commission prosecutes monopoly gas supplier for excessive pricing

The Competition Commission of South Africa (Commission) has referred a complaint to the Appellate Tribunal against Sasol Gas (Pty) Ltd. (Sasol) for excessive pricing, with mark-ups of up to 72%, of natural piped gas. Sasol is the only supplier of natural piped gas in South Africa and supplies gas to gas traders and end-users in the country through pipelines. Commission relied on publicly available information, like gas landing cost that Sasol provides to the United States Securities and Exchange Commission each financial year, to assess the prices charged by Sasol. Commission was set to prosecute Sasol, but owing to procedural bar, that only affords the Commission a period of one year to investigate a complaint, it referred the complaint to the Appellate Tribunal.