Consultation continues on Viterra’s wheat export proposal
The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission has issued a consultation paper seeking submissions on Viterra's revised proposed auction system for the use of its port services for bulk wheat export.
Under the access undertaking accepted by the ACCC in September 2011, Viterra agreed to replace its first in, first served capacity allocation system with an auction system.
Access undertakings are intended to ensure that third party exporters are able to access the port terminals operated by vertically integrated port terminal operators, ensuring competition in the market for the export of bulk wheat.
On 11 April 2012, the ACCC objected to the initial auction system proposed by Viterra. It said it was similar to Western Australia’s system, which has experienced complications.
According to the ACCC “Auctions held in WA late last year highlighted a number of problems with the operation of that system. Large volumes of port terminal capacity remained unallocated through auction, despite the record breaking crop harvested last season.”
Viterra said its revised proposal changes the way that auction proceeds are rebated to exporters and makes changes to the auction rules and the secondary first in, first served system.
These changes aim to allow for the auctions to conclude more quickly and prevent gaming.
For more info: www.accc.gov.au