- Fair trade watchdog has raided Amazon’s headquarters in Japan’s capital, Tokyo
- The US internet giant said on Thursday it was cooperating with authorities
- There are claims Amazon Japan improperly demanded fees from suppliers
- Local media claims the firm told suppliers it would stop working with them if they did not pay
Amazon’s Tokyo headquarters has been raided over claims it demanded fees from suppliers and threatened to stop working with them it they didn’t pay.
The Japanese unit of the US internet giant said on Thursday it was cooperating with authorities after a fair trade watchdog swooped on its Tokyo headquarters on allegations of antitrust violations.
Local media reported the raids were related to allegations that Amazon Japan improperly demanded fees from suppliers, with public broadcaster NHK reporting the firm told suppliers it would stop working with them if they did not pay.
Amazon’s Tokyo headquarters has been raided over claims it demanded fees from suppliers and threatened to stop working with them it they didn’t pay
‘We’re fully cooperating’ with the Japan Fair Trade Commission, Amazon Japan said in a statement.
The Fair Trade Commission (FTC) declined to comment.
Japan’s antitrust law prohibits a firm from abusing a superior bargaining position to illicitly make a business partner accept unprofitable trade conditions.
The Asahi Shimbun daily cited sources saying Amazon might have demanded the payments as a result of increased delivery costs.
Amazon Japan last year reportedly agreed to pay up to 40 per cent more to domestic delivery service giant Yamato, which said its workforce was struggling to keep up with rising demand for package delivery.
The FTC raided Amazon Japan’s offices in 2016 over allegations it improperly pressured retailers selling products on its site.
It was accused of signing contracts with suppliers that required they make their products and prices competitive or at least equal to those offered on rival online retailers.
The commission ended its probe last year after Amazon retracted the requirements.