Merger clearance decisions
APA Group - proposed acquisition of Hastings Diversified Utilities Fund
Not opposed subject to undertakings
From ACCC press release (19 July 2012):
'APA owns a number of gas transmission pipelines in Australia including the Moomba to Sydney Pipeline, the Victorian Transmission System and a 50% interest in the SEA Gas pipeline. HDF is the owner of Epic Energy Pty Ltd which in turn owns several gas transmission pipelines including the South West Queensland Pipeline (SWQP), the Queensland to South Australia/New South Wales Link (QSN) and the MAPS.'
The ACCC undertook extensive consultation on the proposed acquisition, with a strong focus on the extent to which APA and Epic imposed competitive constraints upon each other. The ACCC examined whether the proposed acquisition would be likely to result in higher prices for the transportation of gas or more costly or difficult developments of new pipelines.
“The ACCC had significant concerns that, absent the undertaking, APA would own all of the pipelines servicing Moomba and have a significant interest in both of the pipelines servicing Adelaide and that this would substantially lessen competition in the supply of gas transmission pipeline services and ancillary services,” ACCC Chairman Rod Sims said.
“The ACCC is satisfied that the divestiture of the MAPS addresses these primary competition concerns by ensuring that there is a separate owner of gas pipelines servicing Adelaide and Moomba.”