Israel Electric Corp. fined NIS 13 million for misuse of monopoly power

Israel Electric Corp. fined NIS 13 million for misuse of monopoly power

The Israel Electric Corporation (IEC) has been found to be misusing its standing as a monopoly, and as such has been fined NIS 13 million, according to a decision made by the Antitrust Authority, Mako reported.The decision dealt with a case from 2017, where it was found that the IEC misused its standing as a monopoly to harm those who would buy electricity from private electricity manufacturers. In addition to the fine, several officials of the company have had sanctions placed on them amounting to between NIS 110,000 and NIS 165,000, according to the report.The case dealt with action taken from mid-2013 until the end of 2015, when the company stopped “customer file management” services to those who had purchased electricity from the newer competition, according to the Mako report. The IEC is considered a monopoly because, despite attempts to introduce competition into the market since 2013, it is the only company that has access to the power grid itself and its distribution, meaning even private manufacturers are forced to rely on them. During New Year’s Eve of 2020, the IEC was criticized for cutting power to several cities in Israel to repair infrastructure, which MK Alex Kushnir (Yisrael Beytenu) said showed a “lack of sensitivity and consideration” toward Israelis who immigrated from Russia,  many of whom celebrate the holiday of Novy God.

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