VW's Scania Fined $1.03 Billion by European Union for Price Fixing

The EU commissioner for competition said the cartel had lasted for 14 years

European competition regulators have hit Volkswagen's truck manufacturing brand Scania with an €880m fine for price fixing in a cartel with supposed rivals.

The verdict comes at the end of an investigation by the EC into a cartel of six of the biggest truck manufacturers around the world - Scania, Daimler, DAF, Iveco, MAN and Volvo/Renault - all of which settled with the Commission a year ago except Scania.

"These trucks account for around three quarters..."

The truck cartel fixed factory prices for trucks between 1997 and 2011 and also coordinated when producers would introduce technology to curb emissions from trucks and how they'd pass on the costs of that technology to customers, the European Union said.

Vestager said previous fines against the other companies on top of Wednesday's announcement add up to a total of 3.8 billion euros, "a record fine for a cartel in the EU's 60-year history".

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The manufacturers had an agreement based upon price-fixing.

"The cartel dealt with the sales of medium and heavy trucks throughout the European Economic Area".

The infringement covered the entire EEA and lasted 14 years, from 1997 until 2011, when the Commission carried out unannounced inspections of the firms.

The report says that between 1997 and 2004, meetings were held at senior manager level, "sometimes at the margins of trade fairs or other events... complemented by phone conversations".

An investigation found that the companies had conspired to fix the price of trucks and also charged customers for implementing technology aimed at reducing emissions.

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Today's decision underlines the importance of a functioning competitive market to foster the development and dissemination of cost-efficient low-emission technologies, which is one of the elements of the upcoming European Strategy for low-emission mobility.

Scania's fine is the second highest after Daimler's 1 billion euro penalty.

The EU competition enforcer said its investigation did not reveal any links between the cartel and allegations of carmakers cheating on emissions control testing.

But Scania refused to admit liability and rejected the settlement.

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