The Commission found that there was a frequent exchange of detailed information between Crown and Silgan on the most current yearly sales volumes of metal closures to their specific clients in Germany
The European Commission has slapped a fine of €31.5m on Crown and Silgan for their participation in a cartel concerning metal boxes, cans and closures in Germany.
Both metal packaging firms have agreed to settle the dispute after acknowledging their respective roles in the violation.
The products in question by the cartel are metal closures, also known as “lids,” coated with BPA-free lacquers or BPA-containing lacquers and commonly used to close glass jars containing foods like marmalade, vegetables, fruit, meat, or fish.
Metal cans, also known as containers, coated with BPA-free lacquers are used to pack, transport, and store sterilised foods like vegetables, fruit, meat, fish, or juice.
The Commission found that there was a frequent exchange of detailed information between Crown and Silgan on the most current yearly sales volumes of metal closures to their specific clients in Germany.
Both firms coordinated to add a surcharge and implement a shorter minimum durability requirement for metal cans and closures coated in BPA-free lacquers.
The parties notified one another of their plans, which allowed them to modify their behaviour in the market and their competitive efforts for metal cans and closures coated in BPA-free lacquers.
The inquiry by the EuropeanCommission established the presence of a single, ongoing violation that occurred between 1 March 2011 and 18 September 2014.
The Commission’s 2006 Guidelines on Penalty served as the foundation for determining the fines.
Crown benefited from a 50% reduction of the penalties under the Commission’s 2006 Leniency Notice for its assistance with the Commission’s inquiry.
In addition, as part of the Commission’s 2008 Settlement Notice, the Commission reduced the fines levied against the corporations by 10% for their admission of involvement in the cartel.
Cartels and other restrictive business practises are prohibited under Articles 101 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union and Article 53 of the Agreement on the European Economic Area.