MANAGERS OF COLLUDING FIRMS FACE SANCTIONS

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Vilnius Regional Administrative Court (Court) satisfied the Competition Council’s request to restrict the right of V. M. of Baltic Transport Service, A. F. of Convertus and G. I. of Gedarta to be the managers of a public or private legal person. It has been the first time when the Court imposed a sanction on the managers of the undertakings for their involvement in a competition law breach.

After the courts upheld the Council’s decision imposing the fine on the three aforementioned firms for bid rigging agreements, the Council referred to the Court asking to impose the sanctions on the managers of the undertakings. During the investigation the Council found that in 2011 and 2012 the firms coordinated their actions by agreeing in advance who will win the public procurements for the purchase of construction works, and that the remaining bidders only imitated competition.

When imposing the fine, the Court evaluated the arguments provided by the Council and took into consideration the fact that the firms committed one of the most serious competition law infringements and were involved in collusive conduct directly.

Having analysed the request of the Council, the Court restricted the right of the managers of the aforementioned firms to be the managers of a public and (or) private legal person, member of the collegial supervisory and (or) governing body of a public and (or) private legal entity for four years.  

The Law on Competition stipulates that for the involvement in a prohibited agreement concluded between competitors or in the abuse of a dominant position, the manager of an undertaking may be restricted of the right to be the manager of a public and (or) private legal person, or a member of the collegial supervisory and (or) governing body of a public and (or) private legal person for a period of three to five years. Additionally, a fine of up to almost EUR 14,500 may be imposed as well.