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ABB fined for breaching EU competition rules

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16:05 CEST+02:00
Swedish-Swiss engineering firm ABB, along with six other manufacturers of power transformers, have been fined a total €67.6 million ($99.4 million) for violating European Union competition rules.

In addition to ABB, the European Commission on Wednesday named Areva, T & D, Alstom, Fuji Electrics, Hitachi, and Toshiba as having agreed not to compete in the power transformer market in Europe and Japan.

Siemens was also a part of the cartel, but avoided fines because it had exposed the cartel.

The fine against ABB was also increased by 50 percent because the company was guilty of a similar violation previously, the Commission said in a statement.

The cartel was in effect between 1999 and 2003, with the companies involved agreeing to divide up the market between them.

According to the arrangement, the Japanese companies were not allowed to sell transformers in Europe and the European manufacturers agreed to stay out of the market in Japan.

ABB said in a statement that the company is set to pay a fine of €33.75 million, or half of the total fine.

In its statement, ABB also said the company is “committed to fair and open competition in markets around the world” and that is has a “zero tolerance policy” for illegal or unethical behaviour.

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