Competition’s Chiritoiu: Law on Romanian foodstuffs in supermarkets is very complicated
Law regarding the marketing of local foodstuffs in retailers’ large networks is very complicated and will generate extensive discussion about how it will be applied, Bogdan Chiritoiu, president of the Competition Council (CC) stated on Tuesday, one day after President Klaus Iohannis promulgated the law in question.
“I’m not clarified: on what we take 51 percent? On each store, on all stores in the chain, monthly, quarterly, yearly? I don’t know … So many details remain to be established in implementing rules law, I think there will be the discussion and will be quite complicated. We must develop a mechanism which not to be overly bureaucratic, which would lead to achieving the objectives of the law, but, at the same time, without being extremely complicated and bureaucratic,” Chiritoiu said.
He added that no one knows yet what will happen, for example, in a time of crisis, when there are no products or the harvest will be a poor one.
However, CC’s head stressed that this law complies with European competition legislation as long as it doesn’t explicitly provide that the products to be Romanian, but bearing the ‘short chain’ words.
According to the new law, the supermarkets in Romania will have to sell at least 51 percent products purchased on a ‘short chain of supply’, including meat, vegetables, fruits, honey, eggs and dairy products and bread from local production. Thus, sellers-authorized legal entities are obliged that categories such as meat, eggs, fruits, vegetables, honey, dairy and bakery to be purchased by at least 51 percent from the ‘short supply chain’, meaning those products have to be Romanian products. Exceptions are traders with a business of up to EUR 2 million.
The law stipulates and a ban on traders to charge additional fees such as tax shelves. The project was criticized by retailers and employers’ representatives.