A cartel is defined as a scenario where competing firms come to an agreement and fix the prices by monopolizing the industry. In the public cartel a government is involved to enforce the cartel agreement , and the government's sovereignty shields such cartels form legal actions. On the other had, private cartels are subject to legal liability under laws in every nation

OPEC is an example of a cartel as numerous oil producing firms joined forces to fix the price of oil. Their motivation was to show their dissatisfaction with the westerners in supporting the war in the middle east. The inflated price of oil caused many problems as prices soared close to 1000% of the original price of crude oil. The OPEC cartel was not acted against by the US because under the Bush administration, as they felt that by passing laws, such a law would encourage retaliation against American businesses abroad, discourage job-creating investments in the US economy and injure US relations with foreign countries.

Cartels only emerge from oligopoly market structures and is considered illegal most of the time.