Imperial Air Cargo (Johannesburg O.R. Tambo) parent, South African logistics and freight specialists, Imperial Logistics, has joined the growing list of South African private firms taking action against state-backed carriers with a request to the Competition Commission of South Africa to initiate a market inquiry into alleged anti-competitive behaviour by South African Airways (SA, Johannesburg O.R. Tambo) freight division, SAA Cargo, in the domestic overnight express airfreight market. Mr Cobus Rossouw, the chief integration officer of Imperial Logistics, said that with the industry in a state of "escalating crisis", it is his firm's intention to draw the Commission’s urgent attention to "non-commercial conduct and structures that are preventing, distorting and restricting competition". He stressed that this has serious implications not only for the market concerned, but also for related industries, and for South Africa’s economy as a whole. Imperial Logistics says it has furnished details of alleged non-competitive conduct by state-funded SAA Cargo, which is the dominant player in this market, alongside only one private operator, Imperial Air Cargo (IAC), to competition commissioner, Shan Ramburuth. In its submission, Imperial is said to have outlined SAA Cargo’s alleged failure to pass on to customers increases in major cost drivers such as fuel, landing and handling, air traffic navigation, aircraft leases and the impact of the exchange rate deterioration. “SAA Cargo has frozen its prices since April 2012, despite the impact of increased costs and deteriorating exchange rates. It has only very recently intimated that it would increase its prices. It is our view that SAA Cargo’s conduct can only be seen as an exclusionary strategy to eliminate the only remaining competitor, IAC, from the domestic overnight express airfreight market. There are compelling grounds to justify the Commission launching an enquiry into this market, on an urgent basis,” Roussow contends. Imperial Air Cargo (IAC) is a dedicated freighter operator established in August 2006 and leases three B737-200(F)s for night-time operations between Johannesburg O.R. Tambo, Cape Town, Durban King Shaka and Port Elizabeth. The company is a joint venture between Imperial Holdings (70%) and Comair (South Africa) (MN, Johannesburg O.R. Tambo) (30%), parent company of LCC Kulula Air (MN, Johannesburg O.R. Tambo).