So says the RHA (Road Haulage Association) in the wake of yesterday’s (19 July 2016) news that some European truck manufacturers have been fined a record €2.93 billion (£2.5 billion) for running a price-fixing cartel between 1997 and 2011.
Daimler was fined just over €1 billion; DAF, €753milion; Volvo/Renault, €670 million; Iveco, €495 million. MAN escaped a charge estimated at around €1.2 billion because company management revealed the existence of the cartel.
As well as mid- and heavy-duty truck gross list price fixing from 1997 until 2011, the truck OEMs also collaborated on the timing of emissions technology launches and passing on of costs associated with compliance to customers – all the way from Euro 3 to Euro 6.
RHA chief executive Richard Burnett says the result was inflated prices for new trucks, which “cost haulage operators millions of pounds”.
And he adds that there is “widespread anger among hauliers at the cartel and at the scale of the wrongdoing”.
“The victim of this price fixing has been the whole haulage industry and it is already clear today, and in recent weeks that many of our members will want compensation,” states Burnett.
“The RHA is therefore actively considering representing the industry in pursuit of this and is making final detailed checks about taking this issue to the courts.”
“The truck manufacturers are our members’ key suppliers and enjoy a partnership which is very often based on trust,” he continues.
“Over the past 20 years the supply of lorries has become more complex with a range of finance deals and maintenance contracts built in by the manufacturers as part of the supply agreement to their customers.
“Hauliers will be angered to learn that at the same time there was a price-fixing cartel linked to the Euro-emission standards.”