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Norfolk builder fined £3m in competition probe

PUBLISHED: 11:00 22 September 2009 | UPDATED: 14:08 06 July 2010

RG Carter at Drayton

RG Carter at Drayton

One of Norfolk's biggest building companies was today handed a hefty fine after a price fixing probe into the construction industry.

One of Norfolk's biggest building companies was today handed a hefty fine after a price fixing probe into the construction industry.

RG Carter was one of 103 construction firms to be fined by the Office of Fair Trading (OFT) for rigging bids for contracts.

The Drayton-based firm has been ordered to pay just under £3m.

Morgan Ashurst, which has a Norwich base in Thorpe Road, and Kier Regional Limited, whose Kier Eastern arm has contracts to build schools across Norwich, were also fined.

The OFT said the firms colluded among themselves during the bidding process, leading to customers, such as local authorities, having to pay too much. The ruling comes at the end of a five-year investigation by the OFT.

The fines were largely for the practice known as “cover pricing”, in which building firms submit quotes for jobs that are not actually priced to win the contract, so the client gets a misleading idea about the real extent of competition.

t For more details and analysis buy tomorrow's EDP or visit the website.

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