2 Jun 2012

High court decision on parent companies upheld

4:52 pm on 2 June 2012

The Court of Appeal has upheld a High Court decision that means overseas parent companies can be held responsible for the actions of their New Zealand operations.

The court ruled the Commerce Commission could take legal action against a Swiss freight-forwarding company, Kuehne and Nagel.

The commission claims the company is one of six international companies that colluded to set air cargo fees to and from New Zealand.

Kuehne and Nagel had argued it was a Swiss holding company without involvement in the operation.

But the Court of Appeal has ruled the company can be liable for the acts of its New Zealand subsidiary.

The other five freight-forwarding companies have since settled with the commission and the High Court has ordered penalties of almost $9 million.