The lawsuit was filed following an indictment filed against the gas companies and their managers, according to which between the years 1994-2003 there were restrictive arrangements between the gas companies themselves and between the gas companies and local gas agencies.
It was further alleged that the gas companies agreed among themselves to refrain from competing for the supply of gas to existing customers and also agreed to divide among themselves according to an agreed key the supply of gas to new customers in a way that prevented or reduced competition and led to price increases.
Following the filing of the lawsuit, indictments were filed against those companies in which they were charged with violations of the Antitrust Law. Following criminal proceedings, the companies reached plea agreements with the state, in which, among other things, the period subject to the indictment was reduced to a period beginning in 1994 and ending in 1996.
Following this arrangement, the parties to the class action also reached a settlement and submitted it for court approval. The Settlement Agreement applies only to new customers in the period between 1.1.1994 and 31.12.1997.
As part of the settlement agreement, each of the gas companies undertook to allow each consumer who is a member of the group and will contact it to receive, free of charge and without conditions, a safety installation for self-detection for gas leaks or a voucher giving a discount of NIS 200. This is a benefit at a rate of millions of shekels.
The court appointed an examiner to examine the settlement agreement. Once the examiner has submitted his opinion, the court will be able to give effect of a judgment to the settlement agreement.