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  • Writer's pictureBy The Financial District

Japan Trade Agents Raid 4 Insurers Over Cartelized Operations

The Japan Fair Trade Commission (JFTC) has conducted raids on four major Japanese insurance companies and two of their agents over suspicions of forming a business insurance policy cartel, as reported by Toru Watanabe for Mainichi Japan.

The JFTC headquarters. I Photo: Horocassi234 Wikimedia Commons

The insurance companies under investigation include Tokio Marine & Nichido Fire Insurance Co., Sompo Japan Insurance Inc., Mitsui Sumitomo Insurance Co., and Aioi Nissay Dowa Insurance Co.

Sources close to the case indicate that these companies are suspected of imposing trade constraints prohibited under antimonopoly laws.

All the news: Business man in suit and tie smiling and reading a newspaper near the financial district.

The JFTC initiated voluntary investigations of the four non-life insurers in August and has apparently confirmed instances of cartel formation.

This raid marks the first of its kind targeting major general insurance firms based on antimonopoly laws regarding cartel allegations. The commission is reportedly considering ordering the firms to pay a surcharge.

Business: Business men in suite and tie in a work meeting in the office located in the financial district.

According to sources, the four insurers allegedly adjusted premiums for policies involving Cosmo Energy Holdings Co., Cosmo Oil Co., Jera Co., Keisei Electric Railway Co., the Japan Organization for Metals and Energy Security, and the Tokyo Metropolitan Government.

Entrepreneurship: Business woman smiling, working and reading from mobile phone In front of laptop in the financial district.

All companies, except Aioi Nissay Dowa Insurance, are also suspected of adjusting premiums charged to Sharp Corp. In corporate and group insurance plans, co-insurance policies are often adopted to hedge against accident coverage payment risks among insurers.

The four firms are suspected of adjusting premiums through the co-insurance mechanism.

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