Fully cooperating with CCI probe, says Apollo Tyres
- CCI raidedthe premises of tyre companies in an alleged case of breach of law violation
- Apollo Tyres said that it is fully cooperating with the investigation
- Ceat had also confirmed a visit by the officials of the CCI
A day after the Competition Commission of India raided the premises of tyre companies, including Apollo Tyres, in an alleged case of breach of law violation and cartelization, the company Thursday released a statement saying that it is fully cooperating with the investigation.
“We would like to reiterate that the company follows the highest level of governance practices and operates within the letter and by the spirit of the law,” Apollo Tyres said in an exchange filing.
India’s antitrust body on Wednesday conducted raids on the premises of four major tyre companies, including MRF and Apollo Tyres. The CCI also raided the offices of Ceat and Germany’s Continental AG, the manufacturer of Continental Tyres.
“We are fully cooperating with the antitrust regulator’s investigation and have provided all the details required,” said Apollo Tyres. The company added that it has acted and will continue to act in compliance with the competition laws.
Another tyre manufacturer, Ceat, had also confirmed a visit by the officials of the CCI for a ‘routine enquiry’ but denied any wrongdoing in the conduct of its business.
According to a Reuters report, the case was related to an investigation into the use of unfair trade practices and rigging of bids while supplying tyres for public transport vehicles in Haryana.
Reuters reported in 2020 that the CCI was conducting broad investigations covering many tyre companies following a report from the Haryana government. The CCI said at the time: "There appears to be some arrangement or understanding amongst the tyre manufacturers".
In February, the CCI charged five tyre companies and a tyre makers’ association with indulging in cartelization. According to a CNBC-TV18 report, it imposed a penalty of Rs 425.53 crore on Apollo Tyres, Rs 622.09 crore on MRF, Rs 252.16 crore on CEAT, Rs 309.95 crore on JK Tyre and Rs 178.33 crore on Birla Tyres. The five tyre companies control over 90% of tyre production in India.
The CCI had directed the companies to cease unfair business practices. It also imposed a fine of Rs 8.4 lakh on the Automotive Tyre Manufacturers' Association (ATMA).