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BUA : Flour Mills, Dangote Deny Plot to Drive Sugar Price Hike

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Flour Mills of Nigeria (FMN) and Dangote Sugar have denied claims made by BUA Foods Plc of an attempt to suspend the sale of sugar to drive artificial scarcity.

Both Food Processing companies responses to the accusation were contained in press statements that was made available to this Newspaper.

Moneycentral had recently reported that BUA Foods alleged a plot by Dangote Sugar and Flour Mills to force an artificial increase in the prices of Sugar.

However, in a rebuttal statement, Dangote sugar denied these allegations and accused BUA of deliberating misleading the market to give themselves a competitive edge. The Company also made formal complaints to the Anti-Competition Commission and awaits actions by the commission to address the situation.

“In compliance with the requirements of the Rulebook of the Nigerian Exchange Limited, DSR wishes to strongly refute the allegations and assertions in their entirety as these false allegations may mislead the market and may give an undue competitive edge to BUA.

“We believe this behaviour exhibited by BUA is worrisome and appears to conflict with the anti-competition rules. Last year, just before the commencement of the Ramadan (the Islamic holy month of fasting), BUA made similar false allegations against the Company that it was engaged in ‘price-fixing’ and not honestly pursuing the Backward Integration Project. In response to this, we published a Press Release (published on the Issuers’ Portal on April 14, 2021) to refute the false allegations and made a formal complaint to the Anti-Competition Commission. Another formal complaint was made to the Commission on February 14, 2022 and we await their actions to address the situation.

“In line with our plan, we have continued to supply Sugar to meet the market’s demand and have made the necessary supply chain and logistics investments/arrangements to ensure there are no risks to our ability to meet the current market demands.” Dangote sugar said.

In conjunction with the statements made by Dangote Sugar, FMN, through its Company Secretary, Joseph Umolu also refuted the allegations made by BUA and tagged them as “incorrect” and capable of creating a false impression in the market.

“In reference to the publication in some dailies, the assertion by BUA Foods on the supposed suspension of sugar sales by FMN based on compliance issues is incorrect and indeed capable of creating a false impression in the market, which is contrary to the interest of consumers.

“We understand that millions of Nigerian families trust us for our quality, nutritious, and affordable foods. To safeguard that trust, FMN will continue to expand its investments in backward integration and the sustainable development of the critical aspects of the food value chain, including Grains, Starch, Feeds and Proteins, Oils and Fats, and Sugar,” FMN said.

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