K Line found guilty of car carrier rig bidding in South Africa

K Line found guilty of car carrier rig bidding in South Africa

Japan’s Kawasaki Kisen Kaisha (K Line) has been slapped with yet another fine for rigging bids for car carrier shipments – this time in South Africa. The Japanese line has – along with many other car carrier owners – been embroiled in a number of court cases around the world in recent years over bid rigging.

Yesterday, South Africa’s competition watchdog ruled that K Line should be fined 10% of its local turnover as it was found guilty of bid rigging from 2002 to 2013.

The watchdog said K Line was guilty alongside Mitsui OSK Lines (MOL), Nippon Yusen Kaisha (NYK) and Wallenius Wilhelmsen.

NYK and Wallenius have already admitted to colluding and forked out fines of around RND100m each. MOL, however, was not fined because it was first to approach the watchdog with information.

“South Africa is a strategic hub for the trade of goods in and out of the Southern African region,” the watchdog head Tembinkosi Bonakele said in a statement.

“Cartels of this nature increase the costs of trading … and render the region uncompetitive in the world market.”

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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