CCI slaps Rs 1 cr fine on Etihad

 In what appears to be a never ending hurdle for the Jet -Etihad deal commenced in April this year, the Competition Commission of India (CCI) has slapped a penalty of Rs 1 crore on Etihad for violating disclosure norms under Competition Act.

This penalty is primarily for implementing part of the commercial agreement with Jet Airways even before the CCI’s approval came in.

The penalty relates to pacts entered into between the two carriers on February 26 for sale of three slots of Jet at London Heathrow Airport to Etihad. It also includes the lease of the same slots back to Jet. The CCI is of the view that the slot agreement came much before the approval from the competition watchdog.

Etihad is required to pay the fine within 60 days.

The second bone of contention is the kind of directors that were required on the board and the kind of nominations that were required. All of these things according to CCI happened before they had approved this deal.

The CCI maintains that the deal will not have an adverse impact on competition. This is just to communicate to all the companies and to Jet-Etihad in particular that if it is coming before the CCI for an approval, it must adhere to all the provisions of the Act and not implement any portion of your agreement until and unless there is a go ahead from the regulator.

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