Amidst allegations of anti-competitive practices, Italy’s antitrust authority AGCM recently closed a probe into several energy groups without imposing any sanctions. The probe opened in January and concerned Italiana Petroli, Kuwait Petroleum Italia, and Tamoil, along with Eni and Esso Italiana. The companies were accused of failing to adopt appropriate measures to prevent and counteract unlawful conduct to the detriment of consumers.
In a statement, AGCM said: “The companies have accepted to take a series of actions to address competition concerns”. It further stated: “The companies were accused of failing to adopt appropriate measures to prevent and counteract this unlawful conduct to the detriment of consumers.”
Eni, Exxon Mobil’s ESSO Italiana unit, and the other companies under investigation have accepted responsibility and will take necessary steps to prevent and discourage anti-competitive behaviour. The Italian antitrust then opened a separate investigation targeting other energy groups, citing an alleged cartel over the sale of transport fuel. The companies, including Eni, Saras, Esso, IP, and Kuwait’s Q8, allegedly coordinated price increases for the bio-component of the fuels they sell.
The companies are now being monitored by the antitrust authority to ensure that their actions adhere with Italy’s competition laws. The Italian antitrust agency is committed to maintaining healthy and fair competition, and it hopes that these actions will ultimately benefit consumers in the long run.