[ ] 20/03/2017
SIA among 11 airlines hit with S$1.2b fine for forming air cargo price-fixing cartel
The European Commission on Friday re-instated a near 800-million-euros fine against leading global airlines, including Air France-KLM and British Airways, for their role in an air cargo cartel.

A top EU court threw out the penalty in 2015 but the Commission said its ruling would ensure anti-competitive behaviour in a key industry did not go unpunished.

“Working together in a cartel rather than competing to offer better services to customers does not fly with the Commission,” EU Competition Commissioner Margrethe Vestager said in a statement.

“Today’s decision ensures that companies that were part of the air cargo cartel are sanctioned for their behaviour,” she added.

In 2010, the Commission, the European Union’s executive arm, fined 11 top airlines 790 million euros for running a price-fixing cartel between 1999 and 2006.

The companies were Air Canada, Air France-KLM, British Airways, Cargolux, Cathay Pacific Airways, Japan Airlines, LAN Chile, Martinair, Qantas, SAS and Singapore Airlines (SIA).

SIA — Singapore’s flagship carrier — will be fined S$112 million, according to The Online Citizen. The airline has stated that they would be appealing against the decision.

Another cartel member, Lufthansa, and its subsidiary, Swiss International Air Lines, received full immunity from fines after they cooperated with the investigation.

The Commission adjusted the fine slightly to 776 million euros in Friday’s statement, with Air France-KLM the worst hit, having to pay 310 million euros followed by British Airways on 104 million euros.

“The decision confirms that the Commission will not let cartels go unpunished. Cartels are illegal and cause consumers and business to suffer,” the statement said.
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