The Highest Antitrust Fine to Date Issued in Serbia to EPS Distribution, News
Serbian Commission for Protection of Competition (the “Commission“) has fined EPS Distribution, a sole electric power distribution system operator, for the abuse of dominant position in the amount of 330 million RSD (cca EUR 2.7 million). This is the highest antitrust fine imposed by the Serbian regulator. Having established the EPS Distribution indeed held dominant position, the Commission found several abuses of dominant position and in particular:
1 – As a result of non-transparent business policy, the company EPS Supply was placed in an advantageous position compared to competitors. Subject behavior was reflected in (i) the fact that unlike other suppliers, only EPS Supply was not obliged to deposited collateral for accessing the distribution system; (ii) The same company was also granted significantly longer deadlines for settlement of obligations;
2 – EPS Distribution also instituted different methods for calculating the amount of collateral for different private suppliers;
3 – Moreover, depositing collaterals, in almost all cases, could only be done in a single commercial bank, selected by EPS Distribution. Abuses by the EPS Distribution resulted in other commercial suppliers being forced to increase the price of electricity charged to final consumers.
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