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Commission Imposed Measure for Protection of Competition against 15 Undertakings Operating on the Sports Clothing, Footwear and Equipment Wholesale and Retail Markets

NIS EKSPRESThe Commission for Protection of Competition established the infringement of competition and imposed a measure for protection of competition against 15 undertakings operating on the sports clothing, footwear and equipment wholesale and retail markets.

It is established that undertakings „N SPORT“, „PREDUZEĆE ĐAK“, „OFICCE-SHOES“, „PLANETA SPORT“, „CARVEL“, „SPORTMARKET“, „TOTAL SPORT“, „SPORTIKO“, „UNIVERS-CO“, „EUROSTAR“, „TRIM DOO VRBAS“, „K..G…FASSHION“, „KOPELLI“, „STR FOKUS“ and „KOMISION SPORT ONE“ have concluded restrictive agreements – agreements of purchase and sale containing provisions that regulate prices in further sales, which represent the infringement of competition from Article 10 of the Law on Protection of Competition. The Commission established that certain provisions of concluded agreements represent a mutually agreed commitment that in a prohibited manner regulate prices and conditions of trade.

On August 18, 2016, the Commission carried out a dawn raid at the business premises of company “N-SPORT” and collected information, data and agreements concluded by this company with its buyers.

In accordance with the collected information and documents, company “N-SPORT”, acting as a seller, concluded agreements of purchase and sale with other undertakings, containing buyer’s commitment to maintain minimum retail prices in further sales established by “N-SPORT”. This commitment particularly related to brands PUMA, RUSSSELL ATHLETIC, SERGIO TACCIHINI and others. Also, agreements envisaged the prohibition of sales promotions and other forms of favorable sales without prior approval of the seller, i.e. “N-SPORT”.

The measure for protection of competition is imposed in the total amount of RSD 45,279,975.78, and specifically for: „N SPORT“ – RSD 16,525,732.75, „PREDUZEĆE ĐAK“ – RSD 15,850,569.60 „OFFICE-SHOES“ – RSD 2,705,138.00, „K… G… FASHION” – RSD 459,256.00, “SPORT ONE” – RSD 99,648.00, „TRIM“ – RSD 82,336.00, „CARVEL“ – RSD 1,307,906.00, „EUROSTAR“ – RSD 69,644.88, „STR FOKUS SNEŽANA ZLATKOVIĆ KOSTOV PR“ – RSD 44,263.37, „SPORTMARKET“ – RSD 44,202.00, „UNIVERS-CO“- RSD 2,776,959.18, „TOTAL SPORT“ – RSD 25,626.00, „KOPELLI“ – RSD 31,402.00, „SPORTIKO“ DOO – RSD 127,050.00 and „PLANETA SPORT“ – RSD 5,212,578.00, required to be executed in favor of the Budget account of the Republic of Serbia within six months period.

Commission Delegation Visits BiH Competition Council

NIS EKSPRESDelegation of the Commission for Protection of Competition headed by President Dr. Miloje Obradović visited the Competition Council of Bosnia and Herzegovina, seated in Sarajevo, following the invitation of BiH Council President Ivo Jerkić.

The main discussion topics related to bilateral cooperation in the field of competition policy implementation and exchange of experiences between two authorities in the EU integration processes of Serbia and Bosnia and Herzegovina.

The meeting served as a platform for continued discussions on the modalities of initiative for establishing the Western Balkans Competition Forum, co-instigated with the EBRD by the Commission for Protection of Competition, as well as on the importance of such form of organizing in an attempt to further enhance regional cooperation between competition authorities.

Also, the parties touched upon the specific manners of expanding cooperation defined in the Memorandum on mutual understanding and cooperation in the field of competition policy and law, signed in 2009.

This visit followed upon the Belgrade meeting between two authorities’ delegations held in November 2017, evidencing on the high degree of cooperation achieved between these two institutions and willingness to jointly invest efforts into advancing institutional and legal frameworks of competition policy in the region.

The meeting was also attended by the BiH Council members – Arijana Regoda Dražić, Adisa Begić and Nebojša Popić, as well as Special advisor in the Competition Infringements Division of the CPC Gordana Lukić.

Kingdom of Norway’s Support to Serbia in Implementing Competition Policy

NIS EKSPRESThe Commission for Protection of Competition and the Embassy of the Kingdom of Norway in Belgrade signed the Grant Agreement funded by the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs for the implementation of project “Increasing economic growth through support to promotion of competition policy”.

The Grant will be utilized for strengthening capacities of the Commission in implementing competition policy, while the planned effect is the advancement of its operating capacities and raising the level of awareness on the competition policy in Serbia.

The Project comprises of three segments which will be implemented through organizing promotions of solutions from the Draft Law on Protection of Competition with the objective of preparing a legislative proposal in as qualitative manner as possible, via increasing detection rate of competition infringements, as well as by raising the level of competition culture and awareness among key stakeholders in Serbia. The Agreement stipulates the project implementation period of 24 months, executed during 2018 and 2019.

In May 2017, the Norwegian Embassy in Belgrade published a call for submitting proposals for project “Strengthening EU integration in Serbia and Montenegro”. The overall goal of Norway’s assistance to the Western Balkans is to contribute to development of rule of law and stability through initiatives that promote stability, that is to say closer regional cooperation and implementation of transitional justice in the region, socio-economic development achieved through the increased economic growth and competitiveness, increased capacity in the field of environment, climate and energy, in addition to the increased social and economic inclusion of marginalized groups. The objectives of Norwegian assistance to the Western Balkans are also strengthening of the rule of law through capacity-building of courts, prosecuting authorities, independent control bodies and the police, a more democratic and effective defense sector, and also the fight against organized crime and corruption established as a top priority for the authorities.

This call of the Norwegian Embassy also aims to provide project-based support within the three priority areas of Norwegian development assistance to Ministries, local governments and public institutions participating in promoting and enhancing EU integration of Serbia and Montenegro. The proposed action must contribute to Serbian and Montenegrin EU integration process in one or more of the following chapters: Chapter 5: Public procurement; Chapter 8: Competition policy; Chapter 23: Judiciary and fundamental rights; Chapter 24: Justice, freedom and security; Chapter 27: Environment (for Montenegro only); Chapter 32: Financial control; and, Chapter 35: Other issues – Normalization of relations between Serbia and Kosovo (for Serbia only). The proposed activities must take place in Serbia and/or Montenegro.

Commission Delegation Participated at Conference in Tirana

NIS EKSPRESDelegation of the Commission for Protection of Competition headed by President Dr. Miloje Obradović participated at the International Conference on “13 years’ competition policy working experience in Albania, legal aspects with regard to the economy and business operations; learning through work and international cooperation”, held in Tirana.
President Obradović also participated as a panelist of one conference session, together with competition authority representatives of Austria, Romania and Albania, discussing on the modalities of prospective cooperation in competition policy.

On the occasion, Dr. Obradović pointed that when considering modalities of cooperation in the implementation of competition policy, one must be aware that the said is defined by increasingly more intensified changes occurring in the economy. Towards advancing, foremost regional cooperation, the Commission for Protection of Competition of the Republic of Serbia instigated an initiative for establishing the regional Western Balkans Competition Forum headquartered in Belgrade, to be sponsored by the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development.

“Regional cooperation achieved through the Forum would additionally increase capacities and impact the coordination of practices between regional competition authorities, and also expand possibilities for public advocacy activities relating to the competition policy of all regional competition authorities” – said President Obradović during the discussion with colleagues from other competition authorities.

The Conference was attended by the Republic of Albania Government members and Parliament MPs, in addition to the US Justice Department, OECD, UNCTAD and other representatives of international organizations and expert public.

The Commission delegation also comprised of Council member Marko Obradović, and Senior Advisor in the International Cooperation Division Nina Vasić, LL.M. who also partook in the panel on “Legal aspects of competition law and future challenges in the EU integration process”.

Commission Instituted Proceeding against Niš – ekspres

NIS EKSPRESOn November 17, 2017, the Commission for Protection of Competition instituted proceeding for investigation of competition infringement ex officio against A.D. Niš – ekspres from Niš.

During the proceeding, the Commission will investigate whether the said company, as a sole managing party of a bus station in Niš, has abused its dominant position by charging various prices for passenger bus station services.

All persons in possession of data, documents or other relevant information that could contribute to the fact-finding in this proceeding are called upon to submit the said to the address: Commission for Protection of Competition, 25/IV Savska St., Belgrade.