The European Commission has fined the Bayer and Zeon groups €34.2m for price fixing in the market for Nitrile Butadiene Rubber (a substance mainly used in the motor industry). Between 2000 and 2002 Bayer of Germany and Zeon of Japan held regular meetings, sharing sensitive commercial information and discussing prices and coordinated price increases. Bayer’s fine of €28.9m includes a 30 per cent reduction for co-operating with the investigation, but also an additional 50 per cent increase on account of having received previous cartel fines. Zeon’s fine of €5.3m includes a reduction of 20 per cent for cooperation. The fines are the fourth cartel decision in the synthetic rubber industry in the past three years.