The Turkish Competition Board has outlined principles for
assessing competition law violations regarding indirect information
exchanges in terms of hub and spoke exchanges. The Board's
decision was given upon a complaint (dated 3 August 2015) alleging
competition law violations by three major competitors in the tyre
The complainant claimed that three major tyre manufacturers
violated competition laws by exchanging information about tyre sale
units and negotiating price increases.
The Board evaluated two aspects of the information
Information exchanges made by the distributors of
The Board referred to criteria determined by UK Competition
Appeal Tribunal's Tesco decision. Accordingly, competition
would deemed as restricted if:
Competitors in the upstream market disclose future pricing
information to their distributors with the intention of affecting
the market behaviour of other market players,
Distributors disclose the acquired information to other market
players in the upstream market, and
Upstream market players determine their pricing policies using
The Board also emphasized that practices should be examined to
assess whether their object is to restrict competition.
Accordingly, the Board also considered whether the information
exchange is strategic and could be performed through another
In the present case, the Board concluded that distributors
disclosed the information to competitors in the upstream market
with the intention of bargaining. Accordingly, the
distributors' practice was not intended to restrict
Information exchanges made through research companies and
associations of undertakings
The Board held that disclosure of consolidated historic data
does not have the object of restricting competition.
However, the Board held that information exchanges made through
research companies and sectoral associations are deemed to restrict
Commercially sensitive competitive information is
The data's characteristics are important in terms of market
structure, frequency of disclosure, disclosed information's
market coverage and participation, and
The anti-competitive effects of the violation can be observed
in the market.
In the present case, the effects of the information exchange
could not be determined.
Accordingly, the Board decided not to initiate an investigation
There is no written agreement or evidence to suggest that the
object of the alleged conduct is to restrict competition.
Distributors make the information exchange indirectly and some
disclosures are made outside control of the competitors in the
You can read the full text of the Competition Board's recent
decision at this link (only available in
Information first published in the
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