Beer company fined by EU for restricting cross-border sales

EPA-EFE//OLIVIER HOSLET

A view of the Anheuser-Busch InBev world headquarters in Leuven, Belgium, 28 February 2019.

Beer company fined by EU for restricting cross-border sales


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The European Commission imposed a more than €200 million fine on Belgium-based Anheuser-Busch InBev, the world’s biggest beer company, for abusing its dominant position on the Belgian beer market by hindering cheaper imports of its Jupiler beer from The Netherlands into Belgium.

Under EU regulations, dominant companies cannot abuse their favourable market position by restricting competition. According to the Commission’s findings, InBev pursued a deliberate strategy to restrict supermarkets and wholesalers from buying Jupiler beer at lower prices in The Netherlands to later import the purchases into Belgium.

Anheuser-Busch has admitted that it infringed on the EU’s competition rules and was given a 15% reprieve on the fine from the Commission, who also set up by a mechanism to make it easier for individuals to anonymously alert Brussels about anti-competition practices.

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