Truck car­tel de­tails emerge

New Zealand Truck & Driver - - Contents -

THE BRI­TISH ROAD HAULAGE As­so­ci­a­tion says that the Euro­pean Com­mis­sion’s set­tle­ment de­ci­sion in the Truck Car­tel case shows that MAN, Daim­ler, Iveco, Volvo/Re­nault and DAF “ad­mit they broke EU com­pe­ti­tion rules.”

The As­so­ci­a­tion is ap­peal­ing to UK trans­port op­er­a­tors to join its bid to rep­re­sent the haulage in­dus­try to “re­claim the over­pay­ment trans­port firms made for their ve­hi­cles dur­ing the pe­riod the car­tel op­er­ated – from 1997 to 2011 – and po­ten­tially be­yond.”

It says that a re­cently-ac­quired non­con­fi­den­tial ver­sion of the EC de­ci­sion shows that the truck­mak­ers “agreed on the tim­ing of the in­tro­duc­tion of new ve­hi­cle emis­sion tech­nolo­gies, as well as how much to charge for the emis­sions tech­nolo­gies.”

The RHA says that the doc­u­ment pro­vides “a glimpse of the ex­ten­sive and broad­rang­ing na­ture of the Truck Car­tel, giv­ing key de­tails of how the car­tel was or­gan­ised and how the Euro­pean truck man­u­fac­tur­ers col­luded anti-com­pet­i­tively on truck pric­ing and emis­sions tech­nolo­gies.”

Be­tween 1997 and 2004, it says, “an­ti­com­pet­i­tive meet­ings be­tween se­nior man­agers of the firms, at head­quar­ter level, took place sev­eral times a year at trade fairs and other events, and there were reg­u­lar ex­changes by phone and email.

“From 2002 on­wards, there were reg­u­lar meet­ings among busi­ness per­sons of the firms’ Ger­man sub­sidiaries who would re­port back to their re­spec­tive head­quar­ters.”

The As­so­ci­a­tion says that the man­u­fac­tur­ers “har­monised their re­spec­tive gross price lists across the Euro­pean Eco­nomic Area (EEA) at the out­set of the car­tel.

“They col­luded on gross (and some­times net) price in­creases for medium and heavy trucks through­out the EEA. This in­cluded ex­chang­ing de­tailed spread­sheets show­ing in­tended fu­ture prices, split by truck stan­dard model for each man­u­fac­turer.”

The man­u­fac­tur­ers also dis­cussed re­duc­ing re­bates when the Euro was in­tro­duced, says the RHA, and adds: “The de­tail con­tained in the doc­u­ment is fur­ther ev­i­dence of the im­por­tance of the RHA’s large-scale le­gal ac­tion against the man­u­fac­tur­ers to re­claim the cost of over­pay­ment for mem­bers.”

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