Cease-and-Desist Orders Eyed for 11 Firms over School PC Bid-Rigging

Politics

Tokyo, July 7 (Jiji Press)--Japan's Fair Trade Commission plans to issue cease-and-desist orders to 11 companies strongly suspected of rigging bids repeatedly for contracts to supply personal computers to public schools in the western Japan prefecture of Hiroshima, informed sources said Thursday.

The companies to be slapped with the orders for their alleged violations of the antimonopoly law include Nippon Telegraph and Telephone West Corp., Otsuka Corp. <4768> and Solcom Co., according to the sources. The FTC has informed the firms of the planned cease-and-desist orders. They will be ordered not to conduct such malpractice, the sources said.

Most of the 11 companies are expected to be ordered to pay fines, possibly totaling roughly 50 million yen, for the alleged bid-rigging, the sources said. The FTC will make a final decision on the action after hearing opinions from the companies.

NTT West, a unit of Nippon Telegraph and Telephone Corp. <9432>, is based in the western city of Osaka, while Otsuka, a system integration company, is based in Tokyo. Solcom, an information technology solution provider, has its head office in the city of Hiroshima, the capital of Hiroshima Prefecture.

The 11 companies are suspected of repeatedly prefixing winners for orders placed by the prefectural and city governments of Hiroshima for supplying PCs and related equipment for use at public elementary, junior high and high schools in the prefecture, the sources said.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press