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Vietnam's 19 Insurers Fined for Colluding on Fees by Antitrust Agency

Vietnam Competition Council fined 19 insurance companies including Bao Viet Holdings, the country’s biggest listed insurer, for colluding to increase insurance fees for motor vehicles, according to a statement on the Ministry of Trade and Industry website.

The companies accounted for 99.79 percent of the country’s market share in motor vehicle insurance in 2008 when 15 insurers signed a motor vehicle insurance agreement that four joined later that year, Vietnam Competition Authority, a ministry agency said in the statement.

“The companies violated competition law when they signed the agreement,” according to the statement. The companies’ actions have had a negative impact on the country’s motor vehicle insurance market, Dinh Trung Tung, a representative from the competition council, said in the statement.

Each company has to pay 0.025 percent of 2007 total revenue in fines and 100 million dong ($5,237) in settlement fees, according to the statement. The insurers have to pay more than 2 billion dong in fines, Dau Tu newspaper reported without saying where it got the information.

The insurers, which include PetroVietnam Insurance Joint- Stock Co., Agriculture Bank Insurance Joint-Stock Co. and Bao Minh Insurance Corp., can submit complaints about the fines within 30 days, the statement said.

To contact the reporter on this story: Trang Pham in Hanoi at tpham31@bloomberg.net

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