Finnish antitrust officials propose fine against Stora Enso

(22 December 2006) - FINNISH antitrust officials said yesterday [Thu 21 Dec] that paper maker Stora Enso Oyj should be fined 30-million ($45.6-million) for anti-competitive behaviour, Associated Press reports.

The Finnish Competition Authority proposed the fine to the country's Market Court, saying the Finnish-Swedish company had violated competition laws in buying timber in Finland from 1997 to 2004. It gave no other details.

Stora Enso denied the charges, saying the proposal is "groundless."

This month, Stora Enso denied any involvement in a price-fixing conspiracy in the U.S. after a federal grand jury in Hartford, Conn., indicted Stora Enso North America Corp. for being part of a plan to drive up prices of paper used in magazines and catalogues. STERV (Helsinki) fell 5 euro cents to 11.98.

Earlier this year, the multinational locked out paperworkers at its Port Hawkesbury, NS plant for five months, using a brutal threat of closing down the plant to secure major wage concessions from the workers and pocket tens of millions of dollars in concessions and subsidies from the Nova Scotia government, Nova Scotia Power and Richmond County.

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