On 15 March 2016 Commission officials carried out unannounced inspections at the premises of several companies active in the sector of kraft paper and industrial paper sacks. The inspections took place in several Member States. The Commission officials were accompanied by their counterparts from the relevant national competition authorities.

The Commission is concerned that the companies in the sector may have carried out anti-competitive practices such as price fixing and customer allocation. The inspections are a preliminary step in investigations into suspected cartels and do not mean that the companies are guilty of anti-competitive behaviour. There is no legal deadline to complete the cartel inquiries as each case depends on a number of factors, including the complexity of each case, and the extent to which the companies concerned co-operate.