The European Commission has fined several companies a total of EUR 61,120,000 for violating Article 81 EC. The companies concerned include Almamet, Donau Chemie, Ecka Granulate, Holding Slovenske elektrarne (for its former subsidiary TDR Metalurgija), Novácke chemické závody and its former parent 1.garantovaná, SKW Stahl-Metallurgie and its former parent companies Evonik Degussa and Arques industries. Akzo Nobel also participated in the cartel but was not fined because it revealed the cartel’s existence to the Commission and applied for immunity.
Between 2004 and 2007, the Commission found that the companies fixed prices, allocated customers and shared markets for calcium carbide powder, calcium carbide granulates and magnesium granulates in a substantial part of the European Economic Area. Calcium carbide powder and magnesium granulates are used in the steel industry for desulphurisation or deoxidation purposes, while calcium carbide granulates are used for the production of acetylene.