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Three weeks after Aurizon lost out in an attempt to besmirch the reputation of one competition regulator, the train company's own standing goes on trial by another on Monday morning with the opening of an unprecedented two-tiered collusion case bought by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission.
The ACCC alleges that Aurizon and Australia's biggest freight train operator, Pacific National, breached section 45 and section 50 of the competition law in formulating a deal over the key rail bottleneck between Queensland and New South Wales.
The ACCC claims the two rail companies breached protections against collusive conduct in forming a principal understanding that aimed to both concentrate market power with Pacific National and constrain competition in critical east-west, north-south container and general freight flows.
But, just before 4pm last Friday, the ACCC filed an amended statement of claim ahead of Monday's opening statements to Justice Jonathan Beach in Court 6K of the Melbourne Federal Court.
This article first appeared on www.afr.com
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