Qantas said today it had reached a settlement with the New Zealand Commerce Commission in relation to price fixing conduct within its freight division between 2000 and 2006.
The terms of the settlement are confidential, but include agreement to recommend to the New Zealand High Court that Qantas pays a fine of NZ$6.5 million. This recommended penalty reflects a 50 per cent discount for Qantas’ cooperation with the Commission in its investigation of the cartel.
The penalty hearing is set for 11 April 2011, at which time Qantas will plead guilty to participating in the cartel with other international airlines, including Air New Zealand.
Qantas will continue to cooperate fully with the Commission in its prosecution of other airlines.
Qantas has already resolved its liability (and that of its current employees) to regulators in the US, Australia, Canada, Korea and Europe for its freight division’s conduct. In each case the fine imposed on Qantas reflected a considerable cooperation discount.