(Adds details of fines, complaint, SAS appeal)
By Foo Yun Chee
BRUSSELS, March 17 Air France-KLM,
British Airways and nine other airlines were hit with a
776 million euro ($835.5 million) fine by EU antitrust
regulators on Friday for taking part in an air cargo cartel more
than a decade ago.
The European Commission re-imposed the penalties after
Europe's second highest court in 2015 annulled the EU
executive's 2010 decision due to a procedural error.
The fines were unchanged for all the airlines except for the
amount due from Martinair - cut to 15.4 million euros
from the 29.5 million euro amount set in 2010.
Air France were fined 182.9 million euros, the highest,
followed by KLM at 127.1 million, British Airways at 104.4
million, Cargolux at 79.9 million and Singapore
Airlines at 74.8 million.
Other carriers penalised were Air Canada, Cathay
Pacific Airways, Japan Airlines, LAN Chile
and SAS. Lufthansa, along with subsidiary
Swiss International Airlines, escaped a fine as it
alerted the cartel to the EU competition authority.
The Commission said it had fixed the procedural error cited
by the court.
"Working together in a cartel rather than competing to offer
better services to customers does not fly with the Commission,"
European Competition Commissioner Margrethe Vestager said in a
SAS said it would appeal against the new decision.
The Commission in its 2010 finding said the cartel fixed air
freight services, fuel and security surcharges between December
1999 and February 2006.
The decision led to a series of damages claims against the
airlines from companies such as Germany's Deutsche Bahn
, carmaker BMW and car supplier Bosch
($1 = 0.9288 euros)
(Reporting by Foo Yun Chee, Philip Blenkinsop; additional
reporting by Niklas Pollard in Stockholm; editing by Robert-Jan
Bartunek and Toby Davis)