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Nintendo Under Fire Again

Way back in 2003 the European Commission determined that Nintendo had engaged in anticompetitive price-fixing business practices dating at least as far back as the early 90s. This resulted in a heavy fine being laid against the company- 149 million, one of the largest antitrust fines applied in the history of the commission.

The fines followed a two-year probe by the commission into claims that Nintendo prevented distributors from selling goods from low-cost countries in states where prices were higher.

Prices of Nintendo products were up to 65% higher in Germany or the Netherlands than in Britain.

Every year, millions of European families spend large amounts of money on video games,” Competition Commissioner Mario Monti said.

“They have the right to buy the games and consoles at the lowest price the market can possibly offer.

“We will not tolerate… behavior intended to keep prices artificially high in the European single market.”

At that point in time, Nintendo vowed to fight the fine, which it deemed “surprising”. Well, six years have passed and Nintendo still haven’t paid the fine. At the European Court yesterday in Luxembourg, a lawyer acting for Nintendo said the “penalty was unfair, illegal, even shocking.”

Although Nintendo themselves accepts that they broke EU trade rules, it still believes the punishment is disproportionate.

Nintendo are having a bad day it would seem. BBC News are currently running a story about how environmentally destructive games consoles are, particularly those made by Nintendo.


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