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SOL - Sasol - Competition Law Compliance Matters

Release Date: 19/01/2009 10:00:04      Code(s): SOL
SOL - Sasol - Competition Law Compliance Matters                                
Sasol Limited                                                                   
(Incorporated in South Africa)                                                  
(Registration number: 1979/003231/06)                                           
ISIN Code: ZAE000006896                                                         
JSE Code: SOL                                                                   
NYSE Code: SSL                                                                  
Competition Law Compliance Matters                                              
Sasol today announced that as part of the Group`s ongoing legal compliance      
programme, Sasol Limited`s Chief Executive, Pat Davies, and his management team 
initiated a competition law compliance review of all Sasol businesses in July   
2008. In addition to this compliance review, the Sasol Limited Board of         
Directors, on recommendation of management, commissioned a review of the        
adequacy of competition law compliance processes managed and co-ordinated across
the Sasol Group. Sasol has retained external counsel to assist in this          
Sasol will, in the course of conducting the competition law compliance reviews, 
adopt appropriate remedial steps and make disclosures on the material findings  
as and when it is appropriate.  It is currently envisaged that the review       
process will be completed during the first half of 2009.                        
At this stage, Sasol is in a position to disclose findings of the competition   
law review process in respect of Sasol Nitro, Sasol Gas and Sasol Oil.          
Sasol Nitro                                                                     
Additional information has been revealed by the review process which is relevant
to previously disclosed competition law legal proceedings in respect of the     
Nutri-Flo complaints and Phosphoric Acid investigation (See pages 179 - 181 of  
the 2008 Annual Financial Statements and pages 75 - 77 of the 2008 Annual Report
submitted on Form 20-F to the United States Securities and Exchange Commission  
for the previous public disclosures in these matters). On the basis of available
information and legal advice at the time of previous disclosures of these       
matters it was indicated that a finding of unlawful conduct under the           
Competition Act of South Africa in each of these matters was remote. Additional 
information uncovered in the review process and an ongoing assessment of the    
merits of these matters now indicate that a finding of unlawful conduct under   
the Competition Act is more probable in the Phosphoric Acid investigation and in
respect of one of the complaints in the Nutri-Flo matter referred by the        
Competition Commission to the Competition Tribunal. Sasol has commenced         
exploratory discussions with the Competition Commission. It is premature to     
determine the possible consequences and financial impact of any finding of      
unlawful conduct at this stage.                                                 
Sasol Gas                                                                       
The competition law compliance review referred to above, has also revealed two  
competition law contraventions in Sasol Gas. The first contravention relates to 
the structure of a piped gas marketing BEE joint venture which Sasol established
and in which Sasol has a 49% interest. In support of the BEE joint venture Sasol
agreed to certain restrictive provisions in the agreements relating to the      
venture. In addition Sasol provided marketing and administrative related        
services and assistance to this venture. These agreements were based on legal   
advice obtained at the time as well as an assumption that the venture could be  
treated as a partner rather than a competitor of Sasol Gas. Closer scrutiny and 
additional legal advice obtained as part of the competition law compliance      
review indicated that the assumption was not valid and that the assistance and  
services provided to the venture constituted a contravention of the South       
African Competition Act.                                                        
The second contravention relates to a restrictive clause in a supply agreement  
with a customer for the benefit of the customer. Sasol agreed to the restrictive
clause to support the privatisation of the customer. Sasol is only to a limited 
extent a potential competitor of this customer.                                 
Each of these contraventions was brought to the attention of the Competition    
Commission once they were identified. Sasol is co-operating with the Competition
Commission and has been granted conditional corporate leniency by the           
Competition Commission in both these matters. We do not believe that these      
contraventions by Sasol Gas will have a material adverse impact on our business,
operating results and financial condition.                                      
Sasol Oil                                                                       
Following a competition law compliance review, Sasol Oil was advised by its     
competition law advisors that certain identified conduct may be construed as    
contravening certain provisions of the South African Competition Act.           
Upon the identification of the potential concerns, Sasol Oil submitted leniency 
applications to the Competition Commission and is co-operating with the         
Commission in this regard.                                                      
Competition Commission Announcement                                             
The Competition Commission today announced that it has initiated investigations 
into the South African piped gas and petroleum industries as a result of Sasol`s
leniency applications. Sasol is co-operating fully with the Commission in these 
Sasol chief executive, Pat Davies, said: "While we have always had compliance   
programmes in place, they do not erect an absolute barrier against behaviour    
that may be contrary to our policies or applicable laws or regulations. The     
intense scrutiny of the review initiated last year is unfortunately indicating  
areas of concern. We will not tolerate non-compliance and won`t rest until we   
are confident that all our businesses are fully compliant not least because any 
contravention of law could potentially lead to fines, remedial actions and civil
claims and therefore have a negative impact on Sasol`s business and reputation. 
Where we do identify potential irregularities, we take a conservative approach  
and take prompt action to rectify the situation."                               
Davies added: "Most importantly, our values do not leave any room for unethical 
behaviour. This detailed scrutiny of potential compliance issues is particularly
necessary given the increasing complexity of both the business and legislative  
environment in which we operate and we continue to intensify our compliance     
reviews accordingly. Sasol remains vigilant in identifying potential compliance 
issues particularly given the increasing complexity of both the business and    
legislative environments in which we operate and we will continue to intensify  
our compliance reviews accordingly."                                            
Hixonia Nyasulu, the Chairman of Sasol, said: "The Board is fully appraised of  
the competition compliance review and fully supports the activities undertaken. 
The additional review, commissioned by the Board on the recommendation of       
management, takes a further look at the broader competition law compliance      
processes and the management and co-ordination thereof. External counsel will   
assist in this board-commissioned review and I feel this both a comprehensive   
and necessary set of activities."                                               
19 January 2009                                                                 
Issued by Sponsor: Deutsche Securities (SA) (Pty) Limited                       
Forward looking statements                                                      
In this announcement we make certain statements that are not historical facts   
and relate to analyses and other information which are based on forecasts of    
future results and estimates of amounts not yet determinable.  These statements 
may also relate to our future prospects, developments and business strategies.  
Examples of such forward-looking statements include, but are not limited to,    
statements regarding exchange rate fluctuations, volume growth, increases in    
market share, total shareholder return and cost reductions. Words such as       
"believe", "anticipate", "expect", "intend", "seek", "will", "plan", "could",   
"may", "endeavour" and "project" and similar expressions are intended to        
identify such forward-looking statements, but are not the exclusive means of    
identifying such statements. By their very nature, forward-looking statements   
involve inherent risks and uncertainties, both general and specific, and there  
are risks that the predictions, forecasts, projections and other forward-looking
statements will not be achieved.  If one or more of these risks materialise, or 
should underlying assumptions prove incorrect, our actual results may differ    
materially from those anticipated. You should understand that a number of       
important factors could cause actual results to differ materially from the      
plans, objectives, expectations, estimates and intentions expressed in such     
forward-looking statements.  These factors are discussed more fully in our most 
recent annual report under the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 on Form 20-F     
filed on 7 October 2008 and in other filings with the United States Securities  
and Exchange Commission. The list of factors discussed therein is not           
exhaustive; when relying on forward-looking statements to make investment       
decisions, you should carefully consider both these factors and other           
uncertainties and events. Forward-looking statements apply only as of the date  
on which they are made, and we do not undertake any obligation to update or     
revise any of them, whether as a result of new information, future events or    
Date: 19/01/2009 10:00:04 Supplied by www.sharenet.co.za                     
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