China's regulatory authorities have found a group of Japanese automotive parts makers guilty of price fixing and handed out large fines.
Bloomberg reported that the total fines amounted to 1.24bn yuan (around US$200m), according to the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC).
Fined companies include Sumitomo Electric, Yazaki and Denso.
According to Bloomberg, the NDRC said that fines for price fixing were being levied on Sumitomo, Yazaki, Denso Corp., Aisan Industry Co., NSK Ltd., Hitachi Automotive Systems Ltd., Mitsubishi Electric Corp., Mitsuba Corp., Furukawa Electric Co., Nachi-Fujikoshi Corp., Jtekt Corp. and NTN.
The fines are not unexpected as China's regulatory authorities have ramped up an investigation into parts prices on the aftermarket - the investigation embracing OEMs, parts makers and distributors.
The investigations reportedly covered actions from 2000 to 2011, and involved a wide variety of parts including wire harnesses, alternators and throttles and bearings. Hitachi and Nachi-Fujikoshi were exempted from penalties as they took the initiative in collaborating with authorities, the NDRC said.
The auto components involved in the price fixing were used in more than 20 car models manufactured by Toyota, Honda, Nissan, Suzuki and Ford, according to the statement.