Nine steel manufacturers slapped with record Sh338.8M fine for market distortion

The Competition Authority of Kenya has slapped nine steel manufacturers with a record Sh338.8 million fine for market distortion and price collusion. According to the competition watchdog, the nine companies have been penalised for artificially inflating the prices of steel products. The companies and their fines include Corrugated Steel Ltd (Sh86.9 million), Tononoka Rolling Mills Ltd (Sh62.7 million), Devki Steel Mills Ltd (Sh46.3 million), Doshi and Hardware Ltd (Sh41.6 million), Jumbo Steel Mills (Sh33.1 million) and Accurate Steel Mills Ltd (Sh26.8 million). Others are Nail and Steel Products Ltd (Sh22.8 million), Brollo Kenya (Sh9.4 million) and Blue Nile Wire Products Ltd (Sh9.16 million). CAK said investigations into the steel sector commenced in August 2020 when the Authority began collecting intelligence on pricing and output restriction. The Authority's Acting DG Adano Wario said the penalties on the firms are proportional to the offense, specifically harming consumers who are grappling with the high cost of building materials in the country. "Cartels are conceived, executed and enforced by businesses to serve their commercial interests and to the economic harm of consumers," Wario said.
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