SAA must pay Comair R1.16bn for anti-competitive conduct‚ court rules

The high court in Johannesburg has awarded Comair R1.16 billion for anti-competitive conduct by national carrier South African Airways‚ Comair announced on Wednesday.

The judgment related to a case initiated by Comair against SAA 14 years ago in respect of SAA’s anti-competitive travel agent incentive schemes.

Comair is the second airline to succeed in a claim against SAA concerning the national airline’s anti-competitive conduct.

Last year the court ruled in favour of Nationwide‚ awarding it R104 million.

The cases arise from SAA’s agreements with travel agents from 2001 whereby SAA paid them to divert customers to SAA rather than other airlines.

In a notice to the Stock Exchange News Agency (SENS) on Wednesday‚ Comair advised shareholders of the judgment in the case it initiated against SAA 14 years ago in respect of its anti-competitive travel agent incentive schemes.

“In terms of the judgement‚ Comair was awarded R554 million‚ plus interest at 15.5% thereon‚ which will be capped at the value of the award‚ plus costs‚ amounting to approximately R1.16 billion in total‚” the company said in a statement.

Comair‚ which operates budget airline and is a local representative of British Airways‚ said as this had been a long and complex matter‚ the company would need time to study the judgment.

Comair said the judgment was subject to appeal by both parties.

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