Bum deal for Chilean toilet paper cartel
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Bum deal for Chilean toilet paper cartel

Two Chilean forestry companies colluded illegally for over a decade to control 90 percent of the toilet paper market, according to the country’s practices regulator.

The companies CMPC Tissue and SCA Chile split up the market and fixed the price of toilet paper, napkins and other paper products, said the authority tasked with combatting economic crimes, the FNE.

“This is one of the largest cases of collusion ever uncovered in the country,” it said.

The companies have combined annual sales of around $400 million and control 90 percent of Chile’s toilet paper market.

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Economy Minister Luis Felipe Cespedes said Thursday that the collusion between the market’s biggest players is outrageous, affecting poorer Chileans the most.

The regulator says the collusion lasted from 2000-2011. It is asking the antitrust court to fine SCA Chile SA some $15 million. CMPC Tissue SA is not expected to be fined because the company acknowledged the anticompetitive conduct earlier this year.

“This sort of abuse harms people, the economy and the image of our country,” President Michelle Bachelet commented.