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CC files proceedings against First Gas for anti-competitive conduct

Contributor:
Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media

The Commerce Commission has filed proceedings in the Wellington High Court against gas network operator First Gas Limited for anti-competitive conduct in acquiring the Bay of Plenty assets of GasNet Limited.

The Commission alleges that First Gas, a significantly larger gas distribution business, engaged in anti-competitive conduct by: Having unsuccessfully offered to buy GasNet’s assets, taking steps to retrofit gas pipelines in areas where GasNet had already laid its own pipelines;

Acquiring the GasNet assets in December 2016 without clearance or authorisation from the Commission; and

Contractually restraining GasNet from re-entering the Bay of Plenty region for five years from the time of acquisition.

First Gas has filed admissions to the alleged conduct. As the matter is before the Court for a penalty hearing, the Commission cannot comment further at this time.

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