Brazilian CADE imposed BRL 55 million fine on companies for cartelization in retail fuel market

The Brazilian Administrative Council for Economic Defense (CADE) has established the existence of a cartel in the fuel retail market. According to CADE, 5 retail fuel companies in the state of Santa Catarina, Brazil have cartelized the fuel retail market by coordinating on price adjustments for gasoline, ethanol and diesel. The managing director of fuel station group – Delta, in connivance with an owner of gas station in Chapecó city, agreed on price adjustments for retail sale of fuel, which later, extended to other cities that had a relationship with the gas station owner and to which Delta distributed fuel. Evidence showed that the coordination occurred over text communication which also included monitoring of compliance to the agreements and at times, threats to companies if they fail to comply. Thus, CADE imposed fines amounting to BRL 55 million on the parties involved.