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The Competition Council Fines Two Kiosk Chains for Prohibited Agreement



On 16 December 2009 the Competition Council of Latvia adopted a decision establishing a prohibited agreement between two kiosk chains – Plus Punkts Ltd. and Narvesen Baltija Ltd./Preses apvienība Ltd. – and imposed fines in the total amount of € 146 698. As a result of prohibited agreement both companies almost simultaneously introduced similar commission fees for selling prepaid cards of three leading mobile communications operators in Latvia.

As a proof of the violation served the amount of fees and the time of their introduction, as well as the regular communication between the two companies and the information from the internal correspondence of Narvesen Baltija Ltd./Preses apvienība Ltd. Such concerted practices allowed the kiosk chains to avoid competition for consumers, as the prices were fixed.

For Tele2 Ltd. prepaid cards the commission fee was applied from 1 May to 10 June 2009, and for Latvijas Mobilais Telefons Ltd. prepaid cards – from 1 May to 2 June 2009. Commission fee for the BITE Ltd. prepaid cards was still being applied at the moment of the adoption of CC decision.

The decision of the CC can be appealed to the Administrative Regional Court within one month from the day when the decision enters into force.