EU urged to examine iron ore pricing

On 31 March 2010 European steel makers urged the European Union (EU) antitrust regulator to examine iron ore pricing for possible anti-competitive practices. Eurofer, the European steel industry association, said in a statement it had formally notified the European Commission about possible anti-competitive practices and abuse of dominant position by the main iron ore suppliers. “Strong indications of illicit coordination of price increases and pricing models and pressure on individual steel producers to accept these changes indicate, in Eurofer’s view, that the EU competition rules may have been breached,” it said. Eurofer director general Gordon Moffat said the sharp rise in iron ore prices demanded by suppliers was unjustifiable. “As stated by Eurofer already, the price increases of 80 to 100% demanded by iron ore producers do not reflect the realities of the steel market and cannot be justified by demand conditions for iron ore,” he said. “That is why we are calling upon the commission, as regulator, to examine closely what is happening among iron ore suppliers.”

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