The Banking Association South Africa (Basa) on Thursday implored the public to not make harsh comments or brash decisions following the Competition Commission’s decision to refer a case of alleged collusion against 17 banks to the Competition Tribunal for prosecution.
The commission on Wednesday revealed that the banks were alleged to have colluded on price fixing and market allocation in the trading of foreign currency involving the rand/dollar currency pair from 2007.
“The issue at hand is in process and this process must take its course and we must await the outcome of the tribunal’s deliberations. If the tribunal finds any bank, or all relevant banks, wanting, the law must take its course and each bank must abide by the outcome,” Basa MD Cas Coovadia said.
He added that the processes initiated by the commission and further undertaken by the tribunal must be allowed to run their course without any interference.
“If, during this process, any bank is found wanting and in contravention of the prevailing legislative and regulatory framework governing competition in South Africa, it must be addressed urgently by the relevant authorities and identified banks to maintain competition in the South African banking sector in the interests of consumers and further avoid risks associated herewith,” Coovadia noted.