Cartels: the European Commission has imposed a fine of 880 million euro on Scania

On 27 September 2017, the European Commission has imposed a fine of 880.523.000 euro on Scania for breaching the EU antitrust rules. The infringement covered the entire European Economic Area and lasted 14 years, from 1997 until 2011. The decision relates specifically to the market for the manufacturing of medium (weighing between 6 to 16 tons) and heavy trucks (weighing over 16 tons).

Over the 14 years, the company colluded with five other truck manufacturers (MAN, DAF, Daimler, Iveco and Volvo/Renault) on truck pricing and on passing on the costs of new technologies to meet stricter emission rules. In July 2016, the Commission reached a settlement decision concerning the trucks cartel to which Scania decided not to settle; therefore, the Commission’s investigation against Scania was carried out under the standard cartel procedure.

In particular, the cartel related to:

  • the coordination of prices at “gross list” level for medium and heavy trucks in the European Economic Area; such prices are the factory prices of trucks set by each manufacturer;
  • the timing for the introduction of emission technologies for medium and heavy trucks to comply with the increasingly strict European emissions standards (from Euro III through to the currently applicable Euro VI);
  • the passing on to customers of the costs for the emissions technologies.

The Commission’s decision underlines the importance of road haulage for the European transport sector, whose competitiveness depends also on truck prices.


Davide Scavuzzo