COMPAT seeks details of cement cartel order

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SummaryCompetition Appellate Tribunal on Thursday asked fair trade regulator CCI to give fresh copies of its order levying over R6,300 crore in penalties on 11 cement companies for cartelisation, providing them with complete details on production, pricing and sales.

Competition Appellate Tribunal (COMPAT) on Thursday asked fair trade regulator CCI to give fresh copies of its order levying over R6,300 crore in penalties on 11 cement companies for cartelisation, providing them with complete details on production, pricing and sales.

Hearing the appeals of the cement companies against the Competition Commission order of June 21, COMPAT asked it to issue fresh copy of the direction to them within a week. CCI had not disclosed various facts about matters like production, dispatches and pricing. The companies, which include UltraTech and ACC, have been asked to file their amended petitions with the tribunal within two weeks of getting the fresh order. The CCI would get one week to file its reply to COMPAT.

The tribunal said the matter would be listed for further hearing within seven weeks from Thursday, taking into account the fresh details from the CCI and the cement companies. COMPAT said its earlier direction of September 13 in the matter, wherein CCI was asked not to take any coercive action, would continue. The COMPAT had served notices on September 13 to the CCI, and the Builders Association of India, on whose complaint the fair trade regulator had imposed a penalty of R6,307 crore on 11 cement firms on charges of cartelisation. In their existing petitions, cement firms had requested the tribunal to quash the entire CCI order and had also sought an interim stay on the CCI's penalty till the tribunal decides on their petitions.

Industry body Cement Manufacturers Association (CMA) has also challenged CCI's findings along with the producers. On June 21, CCI had slapped R6,307 crore penalty on 11 cement makers. The CMA was also fined R73 lakh. The cement companies charged with cartelisation also include Lafarge India, India Cement, JP Associates, Binani Cement, Ambuja Cement, Madras Cement and JK Cement.

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