Syndicate questions about the compatibility of fuel prices

The National Union of Road Transport Professionals, affiliated with the Democratic Confederation of Labor, wrote to the Competition Council asking about the outcome of the complaint related to the alleged consensus on fuel prices in Morocco, which dates back to 2016.

In 2016, the union filed a complaint with the council for suspected compatibility in fuel prices between companies operating in the sector, one year after the release of these prices, which were supported by the compensation fund.

Based on this complaint, the union was heard by the interests of the Competition Council, headed by former president Idriss El Karawi, in several sessions that ended with the adoption of a 2020 decision that imposes a fine equivalent to 9 percent of the annual turnover of three major fuel distribution companies.

Following this unprecedented decision, a statement was issued to the Royal Court, in which it was revealed that members of the Competition Council had written to the King about “abuses and procedural practices by the president, which do not undermine the quality and integrity of the decision. taken by the Council”, and they also referred to the “ambiguity” of the investigative steps in this file.

The King decided, according to the correspondence of the members of the Council, to form a specialized commission in charge of carrying out the necessary investigations to clarify the situation, a coin that ended with the appointment of Ahmed Rahho as the new head of the Competition Council. in March 2021, to succeed Idris Al-Karawi. The King also ordered to work on a new regulatory law of the council and to modify the law of free competition and prices.

The correspondence from the National Union of Road Transport Professionals, dated July 29, 2022, indicated that “the damage to all consumers since the liberalization of prices increases and accumulates day by day”; He also warned of the “serious repercussions for the transport company in the face of bankruptcy and financial difficulties due to the high operating costs derived from the gas bill”.

The same correspondence indicated that “practices contrary to the free market continue through the change of prices by the actors in the fuel distribution sector at the same time, and their proximity and lack of conformity with the international market at the same rate” .

The union also expressed “its attachment to its right to obtain a response to its complaint”, and wondered about “their fate and who will be responsible for compensating for the damage caused by the liberalization of fuel prices without establishing the controls necessary for real competition. , especially after neutralizing a company from the equation of the Moroccan market”.

Ahmed Rahho, president of the Competition Council, had previously stated in previous press interviews that the file to examine fuel prices would be reopened after adopting the new legal requirements that exist with the House of Representatives, and it is expected to be approved. before the end of the current year.