Minn-Chem accuses Uralkaliy and Sylvinite of price collusion

17 September 2008 (09:23)

Minn-Chem, the U.S.-based fertilizers manufacturer, accused Uralkaliy and Sylvinite of price collusion. Vedomosti reports Minn-Chem placed a claim with the district court of Minnesota, with the world’s top six potassium chloride producers as defendants. These are the Canadian Potash Corp., Mosaic, and Agrium, the Russian Uralkaliy and Sylvinite, and the Byelorussian Belaruskaliy, whose total share of the global market comes to 71%.

The plaintiff insists the defendants have been pursuing a policy of price collusion aimed at supporting and increasing the price of their produce imported to the U.S. since July 1, 2003.

‘As a result, the potassium chloride spot prices have gone up several times on the North American market over the last several years. In 1985-2001, the price never exceeded $150 per ton; in 2004-2005, prices soared by 60% and reached $200 to $240 per ton, and, finally, the prices nearly doubled in 2007-2008, the plaintiff claims. Uralkaliy and Belaruskaliy’s trader reported in July that they were going to import 30,000 tons of potassium-based fertilizers to the U.S. at a price of $1,000 per ton,’ Vedomosti says.

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