Russian antimonopoly watchdog suspects LG and Philips of price collusion
MOSCOW, February 21 (RAPSI) - The Federal Antimonopoly Service (FAS) is carrying out inspections in the Russian-based offices of LG and Philips companies on suspicion of price collusion during sales of technology, Interfax reported Tuesday citing the watchdog’s press service.
According to FAS, Philips obstructs the inspection.
The watchdog has been conducting audits in technology companies concerning alleged price fixing since 2016. In particular, FAS has already inspected Samsung, Alcatel, Sony, Asus and found no violations of smartphones’ pricing.
Currently, the Federal Antimonopoly Service is conducting check of IPhone 7 pricing; its results will be known by the end of February.
Inspections are being conducted following initiation of a case against Apple group of companies.
FAS reported earlier, that the case over alleged violation of competition legislation had been opened against “Apple Rus” company, Apple Holding B.V., Apple Sales Ireland, Apple Operations International and Apple Inc.
The watchdog claimed that there were signs of pricing coordination among Apple iPhone resellers, which led to the establishment of equal retail prices for the smartphones. Official antimonopoly investigation was launched after receiving a complaint over identical prices for Apple iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus, which appeared on Russian market in October 2015.
According to FAS, since the beginning of distribution of iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus, most resellers have set equal prices for the product and kept it that way for some time. Additionally, FAS detected that prices for other Apple products were also identical. The Service believes that these identical prices are a result of coordinated price-setting by Apple group of companies, which led to setting “recommended” prices on products as “obligatory”.
Apple denied the Federal Antimonopoly Service’s charges claiming that resellers set their own prices for the goods.