Japan’s Fair Trade Commission (FTC) has ordered Nippon Express and 11 other transport companies to pay over US$94 million in fines for what the competition watchdog sees as their collective attempt to fix international air cargo charges, Kyodo News reported. The FTC also issued an order to the companies to discontinue the practice and urged the Japan Aircargo Forwarders Association to prevent a recurrence of a similar act. The FTC believes the association served as a venue for consultations to form a cartel on the charges. Nippon Express, Japan’s largest general transport company, was ordered to pay about US$26 million, Yusen Air and Sea Service about US$17.8 million, and Kintetsu World Express about US$15.7 million. The FTC charges that the 12 companies formed a cartel to pass on fuel surcharges imposed by airlines to cargo charges and set a tariff for security charges per cargo shipment from September 2002 to November 2007.
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