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GVH fines Allianz Hungária and partners

Hungary's Competition Office (GVH) on Thursday announced it had fined insurance company Allianz Hungária and its partners a combined Ft 6.8 billion for fixing vehicle repair fees in 2004 and 2005.

GVH fined Allianz Hungária Ft 5.319 billion, Generali Providencia Biztositó Ft 1.046 billion, The National Association of Car Dealers Ft 360 million, Magyar Peugeot Márkakereskedők Biztositási Alkusz Ft 45 million, Magyar Opelkereskedők Broker Ft 13.6 million and Porsche Biztositási Alkusz Ft 30.7 million for the offense.

The office also investigated the Association of Hungarian Insurers, but found insufficient evidence to continue. GVH uncovered the price-fixing during an on-site inspection in June 2005. The office said Allianz had reached agreements with car dealerships on prices for repair fees each year between 2002 and 2005.

Fees were raised about 10% over the rate of inflation each year, GVH noted. The cartel's actions hurt not only consumers but other market players as well, GVH said. (Mti-Eco, Magyar Hírlap, Napi Gazdaság)