THE COUNCIL of the Antitrust Office (PMÚ) has confirmed the fine of €10 million for the state-run freight carrier Cargo issued in August 2013. The decision became valid on December 5, 2014, the TASR newswire reported.
Cargo was fined for limiting the sale and rental of electric locomotives and fuelling of the engine locomotives by private carriers who competed with it. By these steps it misused its dominant position in the market under the law on protection of competition and the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union, TASR reported.
The company was violating the law between 2005 and 2010. At the time Cargo was the dominant player in the freight railway transport market where also several private carriers were active. If they wanted to do business in Slovakia, they needed engine or electric locomotives. The electric ones are more effective regarding the costs. The only firm which could provide them was, however, Cargo which refused to sell or rent them to the firms, according to TASR.
Therefore the private carriers had to use less effective engine locomotives that operate on diesel fuel. The companies encountered another problem as the network of petrol stations was also owned by Cargo which did not allow them to fuel the locomotives there.
“Two limitations, i.e. the sale and rent of electric locomotives, as well as fuelling the engine locomotives, were part of one strategy focused on driving rivals out of market and keeping the dominant position, which is proved by the evidence gained by the PMÚ,” PMÚ spokesperson Andrea Wilhelmová said, as quoted by TASR. She added that this complicated the situation for private carriers to create business in the market and compete with Cargo.
Compiled by Radka Minarechová from press reports
The Slovak Spectator cannot vouch for the accuracy of the information presented in its Flash News postings.
9. Dec 2014 at 14:00