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Cargo carriers cartel fined €776 million by the EU

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Air France-KLM, British Airways and another eight air carriers fined at €776 million by EU anti-trust watchdog on air cargo cartel that took place during the last decade, reported New Europe.

The r €776 million fine will be applied to 10 carriers: Air Canada, Air France-KLM, British Airways, Cargolux, Cathay Pacific Airways, Japan Airlines, LAN Chile, Martinair, SAS and Singapore Airlines. An 11th air carrier involved in the case, Qantas, had accepted the verdict and was not part of the challenge to the 2010 ruling.

“Working together in a cartel rather than competing to offer better services to customers does not fly with the Commission,” European Competition Commissioner Margrethe Vestager said in a statement. EU Commission gave a second go to the case, re-imposed the penalties after Europe’s second-highest court in 2015 annulled the 2010 decision due to a procedural error on the case.

All fines remain as on 2010 decision, except Martinair tax will pay almost half, €15.4 million from the €29.5 million fine that was set in 2010. Fines that remain the same are Air France at €182.9 million, followed by KLM at €127.1 million, British Airways at €104.4 million, Cargolux at €79.9 million and Singapore Airlines at €74.8 million.

Other carriers like Air Canada, Cathay Pacific Airways, Japan Airlines, LAN Chile and SAS. Lufthansa, along with subsidiary Swiss International Airlines, were not fined, as they were the ones to use the European Commission leniency program for businesses. This allows the companies that alert EU’s watchdog on a cartel, to skip being fined.

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