The two global cement giants, Switzerland Holcim and the French Lafarge announced Monday that they have reached an agreement for a merger to be effective during the first half of 2015. Knowing that these two operators are the only ones on the market cement in Mauritius, if the merger is also effective here, so there will be a monopoly.
The Competiton Commission of Mauritius (CCM) monitors the case closely. Even if the merger between the two groups is effective on the international level, the CCM may block the Mauritian territory. "We just learned this merger through the press. At this point, we do not know what groups provide for their subsidiaries, Mauritius knowing they must have our permission to merge. We need to get in touch, these days, with lawyers Holcim and Lafarge Mauritius "says Nandinee Kiran Meetarbhan, Executive Director of the CCM.
However, the Consumers Association of Mauritius doubt the effectiveness of a possible blockage of the CCM. Its secretary general, Jayen Chellum, believes that although Holcim and Lafarge merge globally but not in Mauritius, there will still be some collusion at the local level. "The headquarters of the group resulting from the merger may decide to reduce costs by exporting cement to two companies in Mauritius in one boat, for example," he says. Jayen Chellum therefore appealed to the authorities that if the merger between Holcim and Lafarge materializes in Europe, and although the CCM blocks in Mauritius, the price and the import of cement is again controlled by the State Trading Corporation (STC).
Holcim expects to have more details from its headquarters in Switzerland. Management concedes not know how this merger will result in Mauritius.