Dangote and Flour Mills sue BUA over alleged suspension of sugar sales

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The cold war between Dangote Sugar Refinery Plc, Flour Mills of Nigeria Plc and BUA Foods Plc has steadily escalated to the point of suspending the sale of sugar.

Naija News reports that BUA Foods Plc has accused the two companies of suspending the sale of sugar because the raw sugar allocation for 2022 was denied by the government.

In a statement on Monday, BUA Foods also accused Dangote Sugar of halting sugar sales in an effort to create a shortage and force a price increase for the commodity.

But in a statement published on the Nigerian Exchange Limited on Thursday, Dangote Sugar refuted BUA Foods’ claims, describing them as false and misleading.

Dangote Sugar said that according to its plan, it continued to supply sugar to meet market demand.

It said, “In accordance with the requirements of the Nigerian Exchange Limited Regulations, DSR wishes to strongly refute the allegations and assertions in their entirety, as such false claims may mislead the market and give BUA an undue competitive advantage.

“We believe that this behavior by BUA is concerning and appears to conflict with anti-competition rules. Last year, just before the start of Ramadan (the Islamic holy month of fasting), BUA made similar false allegations against company that it was engaged in “price-fixing” and not honestly pursuing the upstream integration project.

“In response to this, we issued a press release to refute the false allegations and filed a formal complaint with the Anti-Competition Commission. Another formal complaint was filed with the commission on February 14, 2022 and we await their actions to remedy the situation.

Also reacting in a statement on Thursday, Flour Mills described BUA’s assertion as incorrect and indeed capable of creating a false impression in the market.

The company said it had no outstanding compliance issues with the National Sugar Development Board and this was confirmed by the board’s latest raw sugar allocation for 2022.

It said: “On the contrary, we were judged as the most successful backward integration program.

“BUA Foods’ claim on FMN’s supposed suspension of sugar sales based on compliance issues is incorrect and indeed likely to create a false impression in the market, which is contrary to the interest of consumers.”

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