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FAS works to identify additional evidence of price fixing in regard to Samsung and Apple

November 24, 2016, 15:31 UTC+3

The Russian Federal Antimonopoly Service might also check other companies

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© Sergei Fadeichev/TASS

MOSCOW, November 24. /TASS/. The Russian Federal Antimonopoly Service (FAS) is working to identify additional evidence of price fixing in regard to Samsung and Apple, might also check other companies, Head of the service Igor Artemyev told reporters on Thursday.

"We are inspecting the market, so all the major players will be checked. They use certain practices domestically, and different abroad. For us, the other they have poor practices. It seems that we are seeing signs of price coordination activity coordination from overseas," Artemyev said.

Samsung told TASS earlier that the company has received a request of the Russian Federal Antimonopoly Service (FAS) on price coordination of smartphones, and is currently preparing a response.

"The activities of Samsung Electronics in Russia are carried out in strict accordance with the Russian law. We comply with the principles of fair competition. We received a request from the Federal Antimonopoly Service and prepare a response," the company’s representative said.

FAS anti-cartel department head Andrei Tenishev told TASS earlier that FAS is inspecting Samsung for coordination of prices for smartphones, by analogy with Apple. "We have complaints against Samsung in regard to price coordination. So far, I cannot say how it will end. I think next year we will somehow clarify this issue with Samsung," he said.

FAS earlier launched an inspection regarding several Russian electronics retailers due to suspicions of price-fixing agreement in sales of the latest iPhone models. Current iPhone 6S and iPhone 6S Plus prices set by retailers are slightly different against each other and those listed in the Apple’s press release dated September 28, 2015, which gives reasons to believe that retailers did not determine iPhone prices independently, FAS press service said.

The antitrust watchdog requested information from 16 retailers, among them Euroset, Eldorado, Svyaznoy, re:Store, Ozon.ru, Citilink, Media-Markt, Mobiland, Megafon and Vimpelcom (Beeline brand), as well as the official online Apple store.

The investigation revealed that the majority of resellers had set similar prices for iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus since the start of their official sales in Russia and maintained them for a certain period of time, FAS said. Similar situation was revealed with other iPhone models. In particular, the regulator questioned Apple’s iPhone 7 pricing.

Apple denied accusations saying it does not force iPhone prices on retail networks. Resellers set their own prices for Apple products both in Russia and around the world, the company said.

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