IAPD’s Antitrust Law Compliance Guidelines

It is, of course, the policy and intention of the IAPD (International Association of Plastics Distribution) to comply with all laws. The antitrust laws are of particular concern, since IAPD is, by its nature, a group of competitors joined together for a common business purpose.

Therefore, the following guidelines are adopted, and each officer, director, committee chair and vice chair, committee member, member of the association, staff member and any other representative or agent of the association is urged to comply with such guidelines.

I. Membership

Since members of the association derive an economic benefit from their membership, the bylaw requirements and qualifications for membership will be strictly adhered.

a. Each and every applicant for membership, who is qualified under the bylaws, will be promptly processed and admitted to membership.

b. Any applicant not qualified for membership under the bylaws will be promptly notified of the specific reason for non-qualification.

c. Rejected IAPD membership applicants and any members threatened with expulsion because of failure to comply with the bylaws membership requirements will, upon request, be afforded the opportunity for a hearing before the association’s board of directors or executive committee.

II. Illegality of Division of Customers and Territories

Since an agreement among competitors (including members of the association) to divide customers or establish territorial rights is a criminal act, any such agreement, therefore, formal or informal, is not to be considered or discussed.

III. Standardization and Certification

Voluntary industry standards which favor some competitors and discriminate against others create antitrust problems. The association will not consider or adopt standardization or certification activities which further the interests of certain groups of members to the exclusion of others, since such activities may result in antitrust problems.

IV. Industry Self-Regulation

The association will not establish or enforce a code of ethics for its members under circumstances where such code of ethics would result in economic injury to certain groups of members.

V. Price Fixing

Prices charged by its members and the establishment of such prices is an inappropriate and illegal subject for association action and discussion, and the fixing of prices by individual members is declared to be outside the scope of the association’s activities.

VI. Discussion Topics to be Avoided

The following subjects will not be discussed at association-sponsored meetings, whether such meetings be of the executive committee, board of directors, committees or the general membership:

a. Current or future prices. (Great care must be taken in discussing past prices.)

b. A “fair” profit level.

c. Possible increases or decreases in prices.

d. Standardization or stabilization of prices.

e. Pricing procedures.

f. Cash discounts.

g. Credit terms.

h. Control of sales.

i. Allocation of markets.

j. Refusal to deal with a corporation because of its pricing or distribution policies.

k. Whether the pricing practices of any industry member are unethical or constitute an unfair trade practice.

Adopted on February 19, 1985, by IAPD’s Board of Directors.