Wallenius Wilhelmsen Logistics (WWL), owned 50% by Wilh. Wilhelmsen ASA, has received a draft cease and desist order and a draft surcharge order from the Japanese Fair Trade Commission (JFTC) indicating that WWL as one of several companies in the industry has participated in non-competitive behaviour in automotive transportation. The draft surcharge is estimated to USD 33 million and primarily related to the Japan-Europe trade.
The draft cease and desist order and draft surcharge order are provided to the companies concerned for their review and comment, in advance of a final ruling by the JFTC. WWL takes the matter very seriously and will now carefully review the draft decisions in order to respond to the JFTC's preliminary findings.
The investigation into the car carrier trade practices between Japan and other regions of the world, which started in September 2012, has involved a number of car carrying operators. EUKOR Car Carriers, owned 40% by Wilh. Wilhelmsen ASA, was initially included in the investigation, but has not been named in the draft orders from the JFTC.
WWL has done its best to respond to the fair trade authority's requests during the past 17 months, and expects to receive the final cease and desist order and final surcharge order from the JFTC in the second quarter.