Lisbon administrative court rejects anti-competitive business practice claims against Svitzer
Court dismisses Port Towage Lisbon’s claims of predatory pricing.
The Tribunal Administrativo de Círculo de Lisboa has found no wrongdoing on the part of Svitzer in tendering for the Portuguese Navy’s 2018 towage contract for the Lisbon port, rebuffing claims of predatory pricing and violation of competition law.
The court found that the arguments submitted against Svitzer on its pricing for the tender were irrelevant, and further found that Svitzer was operating at an appropriate cost level which was not anticompetitive with the rest of the market.
The court also found that a document containing costs that was submitted by Svitzer to the Lisbon Port Authority in 2014 was obsolete in reference to the 2018 tender, as it could not be used as a basis to establish the existence of below-cost sales, given the passage of time between those years and changes in the market that came with them.
Finally, the court found that there was no evidence of anticompetitive behaviour by Svitzer, nor of any alleged intent to force its competitors out of Portugal’s towage market. The court also rejected a request from the plaintiff to send a copy of the claim to Portugal’s Competition Authority.
Speaking on the ruling, Kasper Nilaus, Managing Director, Svitzer Europe said: “We have cooperated fully with the Portuguese authorities and are pleased with the ruling. We have always been completely committed to ensuring that our business meets the very highest standards, complying with all laws and regulations.”