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Press Release of the Commission

kzkThe Council of the Commission for Protection of Competition exempted the agreements from prohibition subject to conditions, concluded by companies Telekom Srbija a.d. Beograd and Telenor d.o.o. Beograd, on the use of optic infrastructure, and imposed measures and deadlines thereof.

Due to the public interest in the case, as well as inaccurate and misleading information presented during the procedure, to inform the public accordingly, the Commission will publish the full version of the decision with expositions not containing provisions applicable to the protection of information once the procedural conditions are met, that is, once it decides on the requests of the companies for data protection (Article 45 of the Law on Protection of Competition).

Sector Inquiry into Sugar Beet Production and Buy Out, Sugar Production and Wholesale Trade from 2017-2019

kzkPursuant to Article 47 of the Law on Protection of Competition and the Decision of the CPC Council, the Commission launched a sector inquiry into competitive conditions on the markets for sugar beet production and buy out, sugar production from sugar beet processing, and sugar wholesale trade.

The subject of this research was to establish relations between competitors on the markets concerned from 2017-2019, assess their market share and relative power, analyze regulatory framework and look into the (contractual) relations between sugar beet producers, sugar beet purchasers, sugar producers, and wholesale traders of sugar products.

The Report on the inquiry into these particular markets summarizes the conclusions made in reference to the markets concerned, provides an overview of the dynamics between basic parameters of the markets concerned, offers comparisons with the EU market, particularly considering the changes that have happened during the observed period, gives an analysis of contractual relations, rebate policy, and compares the selling prices on the domestic market and export prices. Considering the tendencies on the sugar market and reduction in the number of operating sugar refineries both on the national and European markets, it is established that the export potential of this industrial sector to the neighboring countries is a very important factor, and that is necessary to maintain the production capacities and prevent the trend of closing and decline in the number of operating sugar refineries in the Republic of Serbia.

The Commission wishes to express its gratitude to all undertakings for providing the requested information during the Report drafting process and invites all stakeholders and other experts to present their respective commentaries to the Report by sending their observations to the email address office.kzk@kzk.gov.rs, Subject line: Commentary to the Sector Inquiry into the Markets for Sugar Beet and Sugar in the Republic of Serbia.

Extension of Proceedings to Cover New Undertakings on the Consumer Electronics Market

kzkThe Commission for Protection of Competition has extended the scope of an antitrust proceedings beyond the original parties, companies Comtrade Distribution d.o.o, Roaming Electronics d.o.o., and Tehnomanija d.o.o., by instituting proceedings against companies Gigatron eksport-import, Tehnomedia centar d.o.o., Emmezeta Srbija d.o.o., XLS d.o.o., and Tehnomanija d.o.o., to investigate the existence of restrictive agreements referred to in Article 10 of the Law on Protection of Competition, which restrict competition on the retail markets for consumer electronics in the Republic of Serbia.

In 2020, the Commission analyzed the conditions of competition on the wholesale and retail market for consumer electronics in the Republic of Serbia. Accordingly, and upon consulting the public data on prices, it is established that consumer electronics offered in retail outlets and online sales of the retailers concerned are sold at identical or nearly identical prices. Based on the information and data currently at its disposal, the Commission found reasonable grounds to believe that said undertakings as retailers of consumer electronics have not set their retail prices independently, but have fixed them in cooperation with importers and distributors Comtrade Distribution d.o.o., Roaming Electronics d.o.o., and Tehnomalnija d.o.o..

Resale price maintenance as a particular type of anticompetitive behavior may be committed by a supplier, as well as at the wholesale and retail levels, in which case the retailer is held jointly responsible with the supplier for this type of violation of competition law.

All persons in possession of data, documents or other relevant information that could contribute to the accurate fact-finding in this proceedings are invited to present said evidence to the Commission for Protection of Competition, at 25 Savska St., 4th Floor, Belgrade.

Commission Communication

kzkThe Commission for Protection of Competition was approached by companies Telekom Srbija a.d. and Telenor Srbija with a request for individual exemption (Art. 12). In proceedings on requests of this kind, the Commission first establishes its competence and then decides on the fulfillment of conditions for exemption of an agreement provided, in conformity with the requirements prescribed by the law (Arts. 11, 12, 13, and 14 of the Law on Protection of Competition), which is a procedure that will be followed in the case of this particular request as well.

To avoid any further public misinformation, we underline that the case does not concern a concentration (merger) between two or more undertakings, but an exemption from the prohibition of an agreement on limited and defined business cooperation in a particular business segment.

We also note that the Commission in its current practice (Exempt agreements) had already acted on requests for individual exemption of agreements concluded between undertakings active on the market for electronic communications, Telenor – VIP mobile, Telenor – SBB, etc.

Considering this specific market, whose development and functioning are also within the competence of sectoral regulatory bodies, the Commission will continue to act on this request for individual exemption, in cooperation with those authorities.
Under the Law on Protection of Competition and in the interest in bringing proceedings, as well as to protect the rights of parties in such proceedings, the Commission currently cannot provide more detail on this matter, nor prejudice on the deadlines or its actions.
The Commission continues to inform the public in a timely fashion on its activities, in the manner prescribed by the Law.