MOSCOW (RT) - The European Union has fined BMW, VW, Audi, and Porsche $1 billion for “cartel behavior” in conspiring to curb the development of clean-emissions technology, while Daimler got a pass for informing on its co-conspirators.
EU antitrust chief Margrethe Vestager slapped German carmakers with the hefty fine, alleging that, even though the companies in question had the technology to cut harmful emissions, they deliberately shied away from competition, denying their customers the option to buy cleaner cars.
“Today, the Commission took a decision against five car manufacturers – Daimler, BMW, as well as Volkswagen, Audi, and Porsche, which are part of the Volkswagen group. The Commission imposed a total fine of €875 million. These car manufacturers illegally colluded to restrict competition in the area of emission-cleaning technology for diesel cars,” Vestager said in a statement posted on the European Commission website.
Vestager outlined that, between 2009 and 2014, representatives of the five companies in question attended the so-called ‘circle of five’ technical meetings, where they decided to put on hold the technological developments able to curb harmful nitrogen oxide gas emissions of their diesel cars.