EU raids European oil majors in anti-trust inquiry

European commission15 May 2013 – Shell, BP and Statoil have said their offices were inspected on Tuesday as part of a European Commission investigation into suspected anti-competitive practices.

Officials from the European Commission and its EEA equivalent the EFTA Surveillance Authority carried out the raids on the trio’s offices in London and Stavanger.

The authorities are investigating alleged violations of European competition rules related to the Platts’ market-on-close price assessment process for reporting of prices for oil and other commodities, believed to have been going on since 2002, Statoil said.

The probe also relates to “potential abuse of a possible dominant market position by another party”, Statoil added.

The company said it was “co-operating with the authorities in their inspection”.

Shell and BP both issued subsequent statements confirming their offices were also inspected, Dow Jones Newswires reported.

The two companies said they were co-operating fully with the investigation but could not comment further for legal reasons.

Oil price reporting agency Platts said that its offices in London had also been inspected as part of the inquiry.
*Bill Lehane, Steve Marshall, Upstreamonline

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