Cartel game

03-10-2017 | 09:00

Representatives of FAS, antimonopoly authorities from other countries and experts took part in a cartel exercise

The event took place on 19 September 2017 as part of the business programme of an international event - the Competition Week in Russia. The participants divided into four teams: two respondents, an antimonopoly body and an antimonopoly tribunal.

A hypothetical case was a suspected collusion of two companies that synchronized their prices using a software algorithm.

At the start of the game, Stats-Secretary, Deputy Head of FAS Andrey Tsarikovskiy emphasized: "Cartels is a topic, on which all jurisdictions may talk freely. In spite of sometimes different approaches to these violations, the harshly negative attitude to cartels in all countries is unchanged".

Head of FAS Anti-Cartel Department Andrey Tenishev pointed out that anticompetitive arrangements made using software and algorithms are not uncommon. Recently FAS made a first decision on a case where software implemented arrangements between humans not to reduce the price for more than 1%. "We exposed more than 2000 tenders where software robots were used.  No doubt, if investigated further, the number of such incident will only go up".

General Director, Austria’s Federal Competition Authority, Theodor Tanner, UNCTAD Legal Affairs Officer, Pierre Horna, and Director of Norway competition authority, Lars Sorgard shard their experiences in investigating cartel cases.

The final decision: postpone the “hearing”, bring the software vendor into the proceedings, the antimonopoly body must carry out unscheduled inspections at all respondents, if necessary cooperating with the competition authorities of other countries.

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