US House passes bill to subject OPEC nations to US antitrust law

US House passes bill to subject OPEC nations to US antitrust law

[JURIST] The US House of Representatives Tuesday voted 324-84 [roll call] to pass a bill [HR 6074 materials] which would subject members of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) [official website] to US antitrust [JURIST news archive] law. The bill would authorize the US Department of Justice to file charges against OPEC countries for allegedly restricting oil supplies and colluding to set prices. The bill now goes to the Senate.

President George W. Bush has threatened to veto the bill, but the House will likely be able to override any potential veto. The White House argues [SAP, PDF] that initiating legal action against oil-producing nations may hurt relations and invite retaliation. Reuters has more.