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5 taxi companies in Greater Copenhagen have abused their collective dominant position

31. maj 2006

4/0120-0100-0086/ISA//LKF The Council Meeting 31 May 2006

On 31 May 2006 the Danish Competition Council adopted a decision concluding that the taxi companies Taxi 4x35, Codan Taxi, Taxi Nord, Vest-Taxa and BVH Taxa, which operate in Greater Copenhagen, have abused their collective dominant position by excluding Taxa Motor from the mutual clearing of taxi cheques and taxi debit cards.

Through a number of years the taxi companies in Greater Copenhagen have operated a mutual clearing arrangement covering taxi cheques and taxi debit cards issued by the taxi companies primarily to business customers.

The five taxi companies had coordinated the termination of Taxa Motor from the mutual clearing arrangement on a meeting and they had issued almost identical termination letters to Taxa Motor.

On the basis of the written documentation and other evidence, part of which was collected by the Competition Authority on dawn raids, the Danish Competition Council found that the five taxi companies had entered into a concerted practice restricting competition contrary to section 6 of the Danish Competition Act. The Competition Council also found that the exclusion of Taxa Motor from the mutual clearing without objective reason constituted an abuse of the collective dominant position held by the five taxi companies on the market for taxi driving and the related market for mutual clearing of taxi cheques and taxi debit cards in Greater Copenhagen contrary to section 11 of the Danish Competition Act.

As a consequence of the infringements the Competition Council ordered the five taxi companies to readmit Taxa Motor as a member of the mutual clearing arrangement on objective, fair and non-discriminatory conditions.

The parties have reassumed the mutual clearing and the decision has not been appealed.