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Decision to Fine IKEA Reversed

The Federal Anti-Monopoly Service reversed a decision by its Moscow division last fall to fine retailer IKEA for violating laws on competition, the watchdog said Wednesday on its web site.

IKEA MOS, one of IKEA's Russian units, was accused of violating monopoly laws after an investigation found that the company had urged tenants of its Mega malls to choose from a list of “recommended” insurers.

Such a fine could have been equivalent to 1 percent to 15 percent of the company's annual turnover, according to the Administrative Code, putting the total at more than 2.25 billion rubles ($76 million).

The decision to cancel the fine was passed after the watchdog's central office looked into the request after a complaint by IKEA and determined that the law the retailer was accused of violating went into force after the actions in question took place, relieving the company of liability.

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