Sunday, September 28, 2008

Vodafone wants 670 mln euros in damages from Telefonica

British mobile phone giant Vodafone is seeking 670 million euros (950 million dollars) in damages from Telefonica for alleged abuse of its dominant position in the 1990s, a company spokesman said Monday.

Vodafone accuses the former state monopoly of seeking to prevent Airtel, which the British firm bought in 2000, to expand its business in Spain through unfair competition practices between 1995 and 1999.

Spain's supreme court upheld Vodafone's complaint in May 2006 but it did not rule on the amount of financial compensation which Telefonica should pay.

Vodafone then filed a new claim at a Madrid court with a claim of 670 million euros in damages, the company spokesman said.

In July, the court asked Telefonica to present its arguments and it expects to issue a ruling by the end of the year.

Due to the possibility of appeals to higher courts, a final decision may only come in two to three years, the Vodafone spokesman said.

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