“Gazprom Neft” OJSC paid over one billion Rubles following the “first wave” of cases against oil companies

03-03-2011 | 18:45

On 3rd March 2011, “Gazprom Neft” OJSC paid 1.356 billion Rubles to the federal budget of the Russian Federation as a fine for abusing market dominance on the wholesale market of oil products.

On 26th September 2008, the Federal Antimonopoly Service (FAS Russia) found that “Gazprom Neft” OJSC violated Part 1 Article 10 of the Federal Law “On Protection of Competition”.

The Antimonopoly Service found that in Q4 2007 and in the first six months of 2008 “Gazprom Neft” OJSC fixed monopolistically high prices for petrol, diesel fuel, aviation kerosine and fuel oil and created discriminatory conditions for the buyers on wholesale markets of motor petrol, diesel fuel, aviation kerosine and fuel oil in the Russian Federation. FAS Russia issued a determination to the company to stop the violations and made it administratively liable (under Article 14.31 of the Code of the Russian Federation on Administrative Violations).

“Gazprom Neft” OJSC disagreed with the decision of the antimonopoly authority and filed a lawsuit.

At a court hearing on 7th December 2010, however, “Gazprom Neft” OJSC withdrew its claim from Moscow Arbitration Court on invalidating the FAS Russia’s decision and determination, based on which the company had been fined 1.356 billion Rubles for abusing market dominance on the wholesale markets of oil products.

The Court accepted the company withdrawing its claim.

In 2008, FAS initiated cases against five largest oil companies - “Gazprom Neft”, “ТNК-ВР”, “Rosneft” NK”, “Surgutneftegaz” and “LUKOIL” NK”. The case against “Surgutneftegaz” was closed as the fact of the company’s dominant position on the Russian market was not confirmed. FAS Russia found that “Gazprom Neft” OJSC, “ТNК-ВР Holding” and “Lukoil” OJSC violated the antimonopoly law.

Reference:
Recognising violations of Article 10 of the Federal Law “On Protection of Competition” constitutes the grounds for imposing a fine under Article 14.31 of the Code of the Russian Federation on Administrative Violations – from one hundredth to fifteen hundredths of the income of the violator from selling goods (works, services) on the market where the violation was committed.

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