UPDATE 1-UTi Worldwide gets EU notice on price fixing

Thu Feb 11, 2010 5:56pm EST

Feb 11 (Reuters) - UTi Worldwide Inc (UTIW.O) said it received a statement of objections from the European Commission (EC), alleging infringements of European Union competition law with respect to various surcharges.

In a regulatory filing, UTi said it was in the process of reviewing the statement and intends to present its response in due course.

The statement of objections, a formal step in the EC's antitrust investigation, stems from the commission's probe into alleged anticompetitive behavior by international air freight forwarders.

Notices were also issued to other logistics companies DHL (DPWGn.DE), Panalpina (PWTN.S), Kuehne & Nagel (KNIN.VX) and DSV (DSV.CO) by the EC, charging them of illegally fixing prices for air freight forwarding. [ID:nLDE6191MZ]

United Parcel Service Inc (UPS.N), the world's largest package-delivery service, was also contacted by the EC. [ID:nN10174520]

Separately, Expeditors International of Washington Inc (EXPD.O), which also received a similar statement, said it intends to vigorously defend itself against the allegations.

"Should Expeditors be found to have committed an infringement against European Union anti-competition laws, it may result in material fines and penalties," the company said late Wednesday.

Shares of UTi were trading down at $13.31 after the bell. They closed at $13.48 Thursday on Nasdaq. (Reporting by A.Ananthalakshmi in Bangalore; Editing by Gopakumar Warrier)

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