FTC Punishes Contractors over Maglev Bid-Rigging

Politics

Tokyo, Dec. 22 (Jiji Press)--Japan's Fair Trade Commission on Tuesday issued a cease-and-desist order against four major general contractors over bid-rigging in a magnetic levitation railway project.

Taisei Corp. <1801>, Kajima Corp. <1812>, Obayashi Corp. <1802> and Shimizu Corp. <1803> were ordered to prevent any recurrence of bid-rigging, a practice that violates the antimonopoly law.

The FTC ordered Obayashi and Shimizu, both of which won contracts under the Chuo Shinkansen high-speed maglev project, to pay surcharges of some 3.1 billion yen and some 1.2 billion yen, respectively.

The amounts of surcharges were cut by 30 pct from the initial amounts as the two firms had voluntarily reported their violations.

In 2005, the four companies declared their resolve not to commit bid-rigging. The cease-and-desist order marked the first FTC action against bid-rigging involving general contractors since the declaration.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press