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Blow to Polish rival PGNiG as EU court upholds Gazprom antitrust settlement | Reuters |

Gazprom's critics suffered a blow when the European Union's second highest court upheld a 2018 decision that let the Russian gas giant settle a long-running antitrust investigation without paying a fine.

The European Commission, the EU's competition enforcer, in 2018 accepted Gazprom's concessions, which included a pledge to reform its pricing structure and allow rivals a foothold in eastern Europe. That allowed the company to avoid a fine that could be as much as 10% of its global turnover.

Polish rival PGNiG, the Polish government and some eastern European countries criticised the settlement for being too soft on Gazprom, contrasting it with hefty EU antitrust fines for U.S. tech giant Google.

Gazprom declined to comment. At the time of the initial ruling in 2018 it welcomed the verdict, calling it "the most reasonable outcome for the well-functioning of the entire European gas market."

Gazprom had to allow clients to ask for lower prices when its prices diverged from benchmarks such as Western European gas market hubs, scrapping its old system of linking prices to the cost of oil.

'Sapere aude'
by Oui (Oui) on Sat Feb 5th, 2022 at 12:03:38 AM EST

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