Consumer Protection, CCPC terminates Multichoice-ZNBC deal

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The Competition and Consumer Protection Commission (CCPC) has ordered the termination of the content carriage agreement between Multichoice Africa Limited and ZNBC that was preventing any independent broadcaster from accessing TV1 and TV 2 except Multichoice.

 

The commission has further warned Multichoice Africa Limited and ZNBC to desist from conduct that is likely to restrict, prevent or distort competition in Zambia in the free-to air and pay television markets.

This was at the conclusion of investigations by the Commission with regards to the existing content Carriage Agreement between the duo that was preventing any independent broadcaster from accessing ZNBC TV1 and TV2 except Multichoice Africa Limited.

 

The Board of the Commission has further ordered that ZNBC undertakes to conduct itself in an arm’s length basis with Multichoice Africa and its subsidiaries and to refrain from any acts or conduct that is likely to forecloses or limit access to the market or whose aim is to restrict competition.

 

This is in a case where the Commission received a complaint from the market indicating that ZNBC had denied a pay television broadcaster competing with Multichoice Africa Limited local content to enable it fulfil the requirements of the Independent Broadcasting Authority Act.

 

ZNBC entered into an exclusive agreement with MultiChoice Africa Limited with regard to offering ZNBC free-to-air channels.

Meanwhile the Commission has approved a merger where Real Meat Company Limited acquired 100% share in Best Beef and Best Pork Company.

 

The approval follows notification of the transaction by the parties and the findings by the Commission that the transaction would not disadvantage consumers and the public at large.

The approval implies that More Beef Limited, Best Beef and Best Pork are now wholly owned subsidiaries of Amatheon Agri Holding N.V (NLD) which also has a controlling stake in Real Meat Company Limited.

 

However, in order to safeguard current employment and contractual obligations by the parties to the transaction, the Board of the Commission directed that the parties should continue to honour the existing agreements that Best Beef and Best Pork have entered into with local suppliers for at least one year and to ensure that no existing jobs, on both the operation and administrative side are lost by virtue of the transaction.

 

The Board further directed that the merged entity should not enter into exclusive agreements with supermarkets in the supply of their products.

This is according to a statement issued by Commission Public Relations Officer Hanford Chaaba.

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