An ACCC investigation requested by Tasmanian Greens senator Peter Whish-Wilson into JBS Swift’s refusal to sell its abandoned abattoir on King Island will not be going ahead.
Whish-Wilson wrote a letter to ACCC chairman Rod Sims last month requesting an investigation into the competition practices of JBS Swift, as the company’s refusal to sell the abattoir was preventing a buyer from using the abandoned facility The Mercury reports.
A statement released from the ACCC stated that the matter would not be investigated as the abattoir did not breach the Competition and Consumer Act.
“The Act does not apply to a company that owns an asset and takes no action with that asset,” the statement read.
Whish-Wilson expressed his disappointment at the ACCC’s decision to not investigate the matter and added that the closure of the King Island plant saw a significant increase in transportation costs for the island’s producers.
“I’m sure that all the King Island producers are the same. Farmers are angry about Swift and the way they are acting,” he said.
John Berry, Spokesperson for JBS Swift said that the company would not comment of the ACCC’s decision, but emphasised that the request of an investigation by the watchdog was initiated by the Greens, not producers.
“We have an integrated supply chain and the King Island producers are a part of it,” he said.
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