Economy

European Union hits truck maker Scania with hefty cartel fine

European Union hits truck maker Scania with hefty cartel fine”

Scania, which denies any wrongdoing, set aside just 3.8 billion Swedish kronor ($470 million) last year to cover a potential penalty after the other truckmakers were fined almost 3 billion euros for colluding on sales of medium- and heavy-duty vehicles over 14 years.

The European Commission issued the fine because it "found that Scania broke EU antitrust rules".

The EU slapped a huge fine of 880 million euros (S$1.41 billion) on European truckmaker Scania on Wednesday, accusing the firm of colluding to fix prices and dodge the costs of stricter pollution rules.

The manufacturers have been fined €3.8bn in total - a record penalty for a vehicle cartel imposed by the commission.

The five other firms - MAN, Daimler, Iveco, Volvo/Renault and DAF - settled the case previous year, getting a 10% cut in their fines in return for their cooperation. Scania did not settle.

Margrethe Vestager, the European commissioner for competition, said: "Today's decision marks the end of our investigation into a very long lasting cartel - 14 years".

Between them, they produce nine out of every 10 medium and heavy trucks sold in Europe. As a result, the Commission's investigation against Scania was carried out under the "standard cartel procedure". These trucks account for around three quarters of inland transport of goods in Europe and play a vital role in the European economy.

It was discovered that subject truck manufacturers operating in Europe signed agreements between 1997 and 2011 on implementation of prices and emission control technologies. The "gross list" price level relates to the factory price of trucks, as set by each manufacturer.

Senior managers colluded at meetings on the fringes of trade fairs and other events, and also discussed price fixing by phone. From 2004, the truckmakers' German units swapped information electronically.

Over the 14 years the discussions between the companies covered the same topics, eccoring to the Commission.

The company believes it wasn't involved in price-fixing or delaying new engines to meet European Union emissions requirements, Scania spokeswoman Karin Hallstan said in a phone interview.



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