Tuesday, Jul 23 2024 | Time 02:07 Hrs(IST)
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Business Economy


Cadbury Dairy Milk maker fined $366 mn for rigging European markets

London, May 23 (UNI) Mondelez, the maker of Oreo and Cadbury Dairy Milk chocolate, has been fined USD 366 million for hindering the trade of chocolate, cookies and coffee between European Union countries in a bid to keep prices high, media reports said Thursday.
Margrethe Vestager, the EU’s competition chief, said in a statement Thursday that Mondelez had "illegally limited cross-border sales within the EU" to maintain higher prices for its products.
“This case is about the price of groceries. It’s a key concern to European citizens and even more obviously in times of very high inflation, where many are in a cost-of-living crisis,” she was quoted as saying by CNN during a press conference.
The European Commission, which started looking into the case in 2019, found that Mondelez International (MDLZ) had deliberately restricted cross-border trade and abused “its dominant position” in some national markets for the sale of chocolate bars.
It launched a formal investigation in 2021, the report added.
Among other things, the company had ceased supplying chocolate bars in the Netherlands to prevent them from being imported into Belgium, where Mondelez was selling the same products at higher prices, the EU’s executive arm said in the statement.
“The commission concluded that Mondelez’s illegal practices prevented retailers from being able to freely source products in (EU) member states with lower prices,” it added.
A spokesperson for Mondelez International said: “This historical matter is not representative of who we are and the strong culture of compliance for which we strive …”
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