Indonesia's anti-trust body fines cooking oil firms for restricting supply

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JAKARTA : Indonesia's anti-monopoly agency (KPPU) ordered seven cooking oil companies on Friday to pay fines of up to over $2 million each for restricting sales amid scarce supplies last year.

KPPU launched an investigation into the companies' conduct last year after surging prices of cooking oil forced the Indonesian government to implement a temporary cap on retail prices of cooking oil and later a three-week export ban on palm oil, which is used as cooking oil in Indonesia.

Indonesia is the world's biggest producer of palm oil.

Seven out of 27 companies in the case were found guilty of limiting their brands' distribution of cooking oil while the retail price cap was in place in early 2022, said Dinni Melanie, who chaired the KPPU panel.

The seven companies include Salim Ivomas Pratama, a unit of Indonesia's largest food company Indofood Group, as well as two units of Wilmar Group.   Salim Ivomas and Wilmar did not immediately respond to Reuters' requests for comment.

These companies were ordered to pay fines ranging from 1 billion rupiah ($68,050.36) to 40.9 billion rupiah ($2.78 million).

All 27 companies were acquitted of the KPPU's price fixing charge.

($1 = 14,695.0000 rupiah)

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