The Netherlands Competition Authority (NMa) has imposed a fine of €10,000 on an individual for refusing to cooperate with an NMa cartel investigation. On 1 August 2004, the maximum fine for this infringement was raised from €4,500 to €450,000. As a consequence, the NMa has a deterrent instrument at its disposal in case of non-cooperation with an investigation.
This is the first time that the NMa has imposed a fine for violation of the obligation to cooperate since the introduction of the new maximum fine.
NMa officials enforce the Competition Act and carry out investigations into compliance with its provisions. To this end, they also have the power to demand information. There is a general obligation to cooperate, where such cooperation can reasonably be demanded by NMa officials. The obligation to cooperate also extends to former employees of undertakings, which was relevant in the case at hand.Source: Press Release NMa, 24-07-2007 at www.nmanet.nl