Competition Council identifies anti-competitive practices on the cement market

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The Competition Council suspects that the main producers on the cement market use illegal practices and share the market in order to keep the main clients captive and to keep an almost equal market share, a release from the institution informs on Monday.

In December 2018, a CC analysis of the cement industry production and trade in Romania indicated an atypical situation in which the cement producers maintain their market shares approximately equal and stable over time, with the increasing risk of some forms of coordination of activities. The CC found that there could be coordination between the three major producers, Holcim Romania, CRH Romania and HeidelbergCement Romania, at the level of the products produced and delivered, technical development and investments, coordinated with the possible coordination of pricing policies in order to share the market.

Following the opinions received following the public debate of the sectoral report on the production and trade of cement, the same conclusion is maintained, so that it is possible that these companies violate the law, the release further reads.

The analysis points to the fact that the largest company, with the biggest production capacity, uses less of the capacity, which has led to an unusual situation, the three companies having about the same market share with insignificant fluctuations.

The CC analysis also reads that the prices of certain cement assortments have had the same price development. Furthermore, the main clients of each producer are within less than 350 km away from the main trading facility, raising suspicions of sharing the market from the geographical point of view. So, there might be coordination between the three producers in view of sharing the market, the analysis reads.

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