The European Union (EU) regulator today fined five Taiwanese and a South Korean electronics companies a total of €648.9 million ($858 million), for fixing prices of liquid-crystal display (LCD) panels.
LCD panels are the main component of thin, flat screens used in televisions, computer monitors and electronic notebooks.
Brussels-based EU's competition watchdog The European Commission (EC) fined Samsung Electronics and LG Display of South Korea and AU Optronics, Chimei InnoLux Corp, Chunghwa Picture Tubes and HannStar Display Corp of Taiwan.
The EC gave Samsung full immunity from fines under its leniency programme, as it was the first to provide information about the cartel.
"Foreign companies, like European ones, need to understand that if they want to do business in Europe they must play fair. The companies concerned knew they were breaking competition rules and took steps to conceal their illegal behaviour.
The only understanding we will show is for those that come forward to denounce a cartel and help prove its existence," said Joaquín Almunia, the vice president in charge of competition policy of EC.