Photo: Valery sharifulin / TASS
In Russia there is a “cartelization economy”, believes the Federal Antimonopoly service. In many fields in the trades involved cartels is a “criminal offence”, said the head of FAS Igor Artemyev
In Russia there is a “universal cartelization economy,” said the head of FAS Igor Artemyev at the enlarged session of the Ministry on 1 March, the correspondent of RBC.
“We are faced today with the universal kartulisalat the Russian economy. We know what really conspired. In fact, we think that in many areas, for example in the field of procurement of medicines, 80% for auction is a cartel, pre-established conspiracy, a felony. It’s organized groups. I’m not kidding, we all can prove it,” — said the head of FAS.
Sometimes the FAS can “grab” the cartels on their own, without the involvement of the security forces, and in such cases the service gets results, the courts sentenced the company to large fines, said Artemyev. But now, in his opinion, article 178 of the Criminal code (restriction of competition) “not working” because law enforcement is “withdrawn” from the fight against cartels. “The first time we must openly and directly we say that it is necessary to change the attitude to this matter by the police authorities,” — said Artemyev. FAS can now only be achieved administrative penalties against violators, although not requested authority for operational-investigative activities, he added. “We don’t need to propagate the power structures, we ask to fulfill their duty and their obligations”, — concluded the head of Department.
FAS revealed “numerous cartels in various sectors and industries” in recent years, the report said Artemyev. The Agency cites two key examples of such violations. The first is the case of the supply of clothing for MVD, the FSB and the FCS. In August 2016, the Antimonopoly service reported that about a hundred textile companies in the context of collusion were 18 public auctions totaling over 3.5 billion rubles. In these auctions were attended by 40 organizations and real quotations provided the only one. Second loud example — a cartel in the market of drugs. Seven companies from Moscow and Moscow region participated in the 1 thousand tender for the supply of medicines and medical products, demonstrating, according to the FAS, “uniform behavior” (reduced starting price only 0.5–2%). The amount of conspiracy was a little less than 1.5 billion rubles., reported service in August.
Cartels — the most dangerous violations of the Antimonopoly legislation in the world, according to the presentation Artemyev. We need to actively attract them to criminal responsibility and make it a priority of work of the security forces, says the FAS.
Cartelization, in particular, occurs in public procurement. In the past year, the office filed 416 cases on anti-competitive agreements, 80% of them cartels. FAS has identified 298 of bid-rigging (plus 28.4% in comparison with year 2015) and 262 anticompetitive agreements with participation of government agencies (plus 15%). The cartels are working in strategically important sectors of the economy, indicates FAS. We are talking about the development of the estimated indices at the Vostochny cosmodrome, the construction of roads and hospitals, defence procurement, the provision of products and so on.
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As a whole, the FAS began to bring fewer cases. Their number in 2016, decreased to 4 thousand, 9 thousand a year earlier. At the same time, the number of warnings issued has increased dramatically from 2.4 thousand to 5.5 thousand This is due to the expansion of the list of violations, which can issue warnings. Irregularities “are quickly eliminated”, which has “a positive effect on the market,” the report said. Thus, the FAS has been on preventive control, which reduced the burden on business, said Artemyev.