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Bulgaria commission for competition protection imposes fine on Coca-Cola

Date: 28.11.2008

The Bulgarian Commission for Protection of Competition has issued a BGN 500,000 fine to the "Coca-Cola Hellenic Bottling Company" for imposing a monopoly position, the Commission's press-center announced.

The Commission imposes two sanctions of BGN 300,000 and BGN 200,000 respectively and has initiated proceedings in connection with signals received from the distributor of bottled non-alcoholic beverages in the city of Dobrich "Pato", the manufacturers of mineral sparkling water "Mihalkovo" and "Devin" and from Valentina Doneva, owner of a store selling non-alcoholic beverages.

"Coca-Cola Hellenic Bottling Company" has a monopoly on the Bulgarian markets for delayed and immediate consumption on non-alcoholic beverages, iced tea and fruit juices. Since 2005, the company had signed standard commission agents contracts and had imposed disloyal conditions by transferring to the agents the responsibility for an accidental loss of the merchandise or for a client's failure to submit payment.

During the 2007 - 2007 period, the company had banned distributors to trade its products among themselves and had made them sell them only to stores directly serving customers.

The Commission considers such behavior a serious violation of the Law for Competition Protection.

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