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Vavi attacks Walmart deal

Jul 18 2012 17:51 Sapa

Company Data

PICK N PAY STORES LIMITED [JSE:PIK]

Last traded 51.40
Change -0.7
% Change -0.01
Cumulative volume 857059
Market cap 25.05bn

Last Updated: 20/10/2014 at 02:26. Prices are delayed by 15 minutes. Source: McGregor BFA

MASSMART HOLDINGS LIMITED [JSE:MSM]

Last traded 117.08
Change 0.09
% Change 0.00
Cumulative volume 94758
Market cap 25.42bn

Last Updated: 20/10/2014 at 02:25. Prices are delayed by 15 minutes. Source: McGregor BFA

SHOPRITE HOLDINGS LIMITED [JSE:SHP]

Last traded 138.95
Change 1.68
% Change 0.01
Cumulative volume 713451
Market cap 79.60bn

Last Updated: 20/10/2014 at 02:25. Prices are delayed by 15 minutes. Source: McGregor BFA

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Pretoria - Granting approval for the contentious Walmart Massmart Holdings [JSE:MSM] merger was a serious error by the Competition Commission, Cosatu general secretary Zwelinzima Vavi said on Wednesday.

He told an SA Commercial, Catering and Allied Workers' Union (Saccawu) conference in Centurion that the deal would have detrimental effects on South Africa's economy.

"The Competition Tribunal did not consider the broader interests of the South African economy and its people when it approved that merger," said Vavi.

"It should have looked at the rate of unemployment in our country which today stands at 36.6%.  It should have looked at our poverty and inequalities."

Vavi said the entrance of Walmart into the South African market would threaten even the existence of established retail shops like Shoprite Holdings [JSE:SHP] and Pick n Pay Stores [JSE:PIK].

"We warned that this thing was going to be a giant. It's going to be swallowing everything that moves in the economy," said Vavi.

"This is the beginning of the race to the bottom," he said.

Vavi said jobs would be lost as local retailers tried to align their operations with those of the world's largest retailer.

He commended the government for its support during the failed attempt to block the merger.

"They stood next to us and made the same arguments we were making up to the last moment. They were with us. They lost with us," he said.

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