ACCC v Yazaki Corporation  FCAFC 73: Court Increases Penalties for Cartel Conduct
In the recent case of ACCC v Yazaki Corporation  FCAFC 73 (16 May 2018) the Full Federal Court has ordered Japanese company Yazaki Corporation (“Yazaki”) to pay increased penalties of $46m for cartel conduct. The latest action was a result of an appeal which was commenced in May 2017 by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (the “ACCC”).
For more information, see TimeBase's previous article regarding this case.
During December 2012, the ACCC launched proceedings against Yazaki and Australian Arrow for alleged cartel conduct regarding collusive conduct with its competitor in the supply of wire harnesses to Toyota Motor Corporation (“Toyota”). The verdict was handed down in November 2015 and the original decision, which included a $9.5 million dollar fine, was delivered in May 2017.
The ACCC lodged an appeal within a week of the verdict, with Yazaki then cross-appealing against the judgment that it engaged in cartel conduct.
While most of the collusive conduct took place in Japan, the ACCC argued that Yazaki was subject to local laws because it was conducting business in Australia. It followed similar enforcement action against Yazaki and other cartel participants by competition regulators in the US, Canada, and Japan.
Commenting on the respondent’s behaviour in this current case, their Honours noted [at para 253]:
In his May 2017 judgment (see ACCC v v Yazaki Corporation (No 3)  FCA 465 (9 May 2017)) Besanko J said of that action [para 42]:
Response from the ACCC
ACCC Chairman Rod Sims said in an:
Mr Sims said that during the initial penalty hearing, the ACCC submitted to the court that a total penalty of between $42m and $55m would be of appropriate deterrent value, taking into account the serious nature of Yazaki’s actions and the size of their global operations.
Commenting on fines imposed by Australian courts for cartel conduct, the ACCC Chairman said:
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Australian Competition and Consumer Commission v Yazaki Corporation  FCAFC 73
ACCC v Yazaki Corporation (No 3)  FCA 465 (9 May 2017)