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EU fines truckmakers over cartel

July 19, 2016

Five of Europe's leading truckmakers have been fined a record 2.9 billion euros for colluding to fix prices and passing the costs of meeting emissions standards onto customers. Germany's Daimler was hit the hardest.

Deutschland A4 Autobahn Stau
Image: picture-alliance/AP Photo/M. Rietschel

Truckmakers from Germany, France, Italy and the Netherlands agreed Tuesday to pay the European Commission a whopping 2.9 billion euros ($3.2 billion) in penalties for fixing truck prices over 14 years.

Daimler AG will pay 1 billion euros, the EU's executive body said - more than any of the other parties, which also included DAF Trucks (753 million euros), Volvo-Renault (670.4 million euros) and Iveco (494.6 million euros).

MAN SE, a truck producer owned by Volkswagen, escaped a fine because it informed authorities of the cartel.

Another truckmaker, the Swedish company Scania, another Volkswagen subsidiary, is still under investigation as it opted not to settle the case like the others. Scania could face a fine in the future, the EU Commission said.

The five companies colluded on fixing prices and passing the costs of complying with European environmental regulation onto customers for nearly one-and-a-half decades, the Commission found.

"It is not acceptable that MAN, Volvo/Renault, Daimler, Iveco and DAF, which together account for around nine out of every 10 medium and heavy trucks produced in Europe, were part of a cartel instead of competing with each other," EU Competition Commissioner Margrethe Vestager said in a statement.

cjc/uhe (dpa, Reuters)