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EU: EC accepts carrier proposals on rate announcements and closes antitrust case

 |  July 13, 2016

After a process lasting more than five years the European Commission announced today it has closed its investigation into antitrust pricing allegations against 14 container lines trading between Asia and Europe.

To mitigate the EC’s concerns over so-called ‘price signalling’ by the carriers on the tradelane, a deal has been struck that will see the container lines “stop publishing and communicating GRI announcements”.

Instead, if they so choose, the carriers will publish all-inclusive maximum freight rates for the route – however, these must not be made more than 31 days before the implementation date.

The shipping lines will be bound by these FAK rates as maximum prices during the validity period, but will, nonetheless, still be able to quote lower rates.

“We are very pleased that the EC has closed the case without finding an infringement of EU competition law,” said Camilla Jain Holtse, chief legal counsel on competition compliance at Maersk Line. “We and the other shipping companies have throughout declared that we have not engaged in any practices that contravene EU competition law.”

Full Content: The Fiscal Times

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