EU reportedly set to drop carrier antitrust probe

Fifteen of the world’s leading container carriers are expected to dodge stiff fines as EU antitrust regulators drop a five-year probe into collusion next month, Reuters is reporting.

Aiming to avoid the penalties, container carriers have offered to be more transparent in their pricing systems.

The 15 companies in February offered to publish binding actual rates 31 days before they go into effect, with the figures acting as a price cap. The EC has since sought feedback on the proposal and is expected to approve the idea next month.

Commission spokesman Ricardo Cardoso declined to comment on the news.

It would mark the end of an exhaustive five-year probe into how container carriers go about raising freight rates which kicked off with dawn raids in May 2011.

Sam Chambers

Starting out with the Informa Group in 2000 in Hong Kong, Sam Chambers became editor of Maritime Asia magazine as well as East Asia Editor for the world’s oldest newspaper, Lloyd’s List. In 2005 he pursued a freelance career and wrote for a variety of titles including taking on the role of Asia Editor at Seatrade magazine and China correspondent for Supply Chain Asia. His work has also appeared in The Economist, The New York Times, The Sunday Times and The International Herald Tribune.
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