Isle of Man Office of Fair Trading update regarding the investigation into the prices charged by the Isle of Man Steam Packet Company
The Isle of Man Office of Fair Trading commenced an investigation under Section 19 of the Fair Trading Act 1996 into the prices charged by the Isle of Man Steam Packet Company (IOMSPC) for its passenger and freight services. The investigation was commenced in late 2009 and covered the trading of the company between 2004 and 2009.
Investigations under this legislation are limited to analysis of the trading activities of the company up to the date of commencement of the investigation and cannot take into account any changes to the trading position of the company and any impact on prices resulting from subsequent events.
It therefore became apparent that events such as the period of competition for freight that took place in 2010 into early 2011 and the IOMSPC’s response to that could not fall within the remit of the investigation. Similarly, the withdrawal from service of one of the company’s vessels and the change in ownership and financial structure of the company and the potential impact of these events on the trading position of the company would also be excluded from the investigation.
Accordingly, the Office has decided that it will not now complete the investigation and consequently it will not produce an investigation report as it is clear that any published findings of the investigation would be largely historical and any conclusions and recommendations would potentially be no longer relevant.
Whilst no report will be published, the Office would like to take this opportunity to thank the members of the public and businesses that submitted their views during the public consultation phase of the investigation.