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Norway: Competition Authority fines chain of electricians

 |  September 4, 2017

The Norwegian Competition Authority imposes fines exceeding NOK 18 million (approximately EUR 2 million) on six undertakings in the electrical installation sector for illegally cooperating on a tender for school buildings in Oslo.

The cooperation took place in the spring of 2014, and the tender was for the maintenance and repair of electrical installations in schools managed by Undervisningsbygg Oslo KF, the city of Oslo’s company for managing school construction and maintenance.

– Five competitors agreed on identical prices and exchanged other competitively-sensitive information instead of competing to submit the best offer to Oslo Municipality, says Lars Sørgard, Director general of the Competition Authority.

The chain of electricians, El Proffen / EP Contracting, initiated and organized the cooperation between the five competing member companies in the tender competition. They jointly submitted bids to Undervisningsbygg. The undertakings did not try to conceal their cooperation from the procuring authority. Undervisningsbygg reacted to the cooperation and contacted the Competition Authority.

– Chains must pay special attention to the competition law limits when they bring together many competing members in one forum, says Sørgard.

It is the Competition Authority’s assessment that the individual companies could have submitted independent bids and that as a consequence it was illegal to cooperate.

Full Content: Konkurranse Tilsynet

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