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CMA to crack down on cartels

The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) is targeting illegal cartels, businesses which cheat their customers by agreeing not to compete with each other in order to keep their prices high.

The campaign ‘Cracking down on Cartels’ will encourage people who have witnessed illegal activity to report it, by offering a reward of up to £100,000 as well as promising them anonymity.

Andrea Coscelli, Acting Chief Executive, said: “Cartels are a form of stealing that cheat ordinary people as well as other businesses by undermining competition, and we are committed to tackling them wherever we find them.”

CMA research found that, whilst most businesses have a shared ethical sense that conduct such as price-fixing is unfair or wrong, less than a quarter said they knew competition law well. This research has led to the creation of the first advertising campaign run by the CMA specifically designed to stamp out cartel activity and encourage people to report it to the CMA. Adverts will appear in people’s social media feeds, such as Twitter and LinkedIn, as well as on key websites.

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