The Federal Court of Australia has ordered Garuda Indonesia (GA, Jakarta Soekarno-Hatta) to pay penalties of AUD19 million dollars (USD13.14 million) as part of a long-running price-fixing case.

The penalties, imposed for allegedly colluding on fees and surcharges for air freight services, follow an Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) court action against a global air cargo cartel that has so far resulted in penalties of AUD132.5 million dollars (USD91.65 million) against 14 airlines.

The other thirteen carriers involved have been Qantas, British Airways, Air France-KLM, Cargolux, Martinair, JAL - Japan Airlines, Korean Air, Malaysia Airlines, Emirates, Cathay Pacific, Singapore Airlines, and Thai Airways International.

Garuda was ordered to pay AUD15 million for fixing the price of security and fuel surcharges and a customs fee for freight deliveries from Indonesia between 2003 and 2006, plus a further AUD4 million for imposing insurance and fuel surcharges from Hong Kong, a statement on the ACCC's website dated May 30 said.

It is the second highest penalty of any of the airlines prosecuted in the case, behind only Qantas which paid AUD20 million dollars (USD13.83 million), the Sydney Morning Herald reported.

“Price fixing is a serious matter because it unfairly reduces competition in the market for Australian businesses and consumers, and this international cartel is one of the worst examples we have seen,” ACCC Chair Rod Sims said in the statement.

“We are committed to pursuing cartel conduct from both domestic and overseas operators, and think the total penalty ordered against all the airlines involved sends a strong deterrent message, particularly when it comes to international anti-competitive conduct,” he added.

In June 2017, the High Court of Australia rejected an appeal from Garuda and Air New Zealand (NZ, Auckland Int'l) over the price-fixing case, which then moved to the Federal Court to determine the penalties.