File image: Employees at the Rand Refinery.

CAPE TOWN - The Competition Commission and Rand Refinery (Pty) Ltd has announced that they have reached an agreement.

The agreement now no longer makes it a requirement for the dealers of Krugerrand's, prospective or existing, to be members of the South African Association of Numismatic Dealers (SAAND).

According to a statement by the Competition Commission of South Africa, the agreement follows an investigation by them into allegations that Rand Refinery made it a condition for anyone that wished to be appointed as a dealer of bullion Krugerrand to be a member of SAAND, which is a voluntary association in the South African numismatic industry.

The Competition Commission South Africa said: "in terms of the agreement, Rand Refinery has undertaken to remove all clauses, in relation to the requirement, from its application forms as well as its website. The agreement has been filed with the Competition Tribunal for confirmation as an order by the Tribunal."

Head of Communications at the Competition Commission of South Africa, Sipho Ngwema said: "The investigation found that the requirement for SAAND membership can be used to raise entry barriers into the local numismatic industry."

"Rand Refinery and the South African Mint jointly manage the business of the bullion Krugerrand through an incorporated joint venture, Prestige Bullion (Pty) Ltd (Prestige Bullion). Rand Refinery has therefore been tasked by Prestige Bullion to manage the sales and marketing of bullion Krugerrand in South Africa and abroad," Ngwema concluded.

Rand Refinery is the sole supplier of bullion Krugerrand to primary dealers locally and abroad.