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The consumer protection authority in 2015 – an overview

The consumer protection authority in 2015 – an overview

Dodano: 2016-10-04
Publikator: The Office of Competition and Consumer Protection

The Office of Competition and Consumer Protection issued 1095 competition and consumer protection decisions, undertook 581 soft interventions, and imposed fines exceeding PLN 47 million [EUR 11 million] in 2015.

Antitrust proceedings are a basic instrument Poland’s Office of Competition and Consumer Protection (UOKiK) employs in protecting competition. Such proceedings can result in the Authority ordering an undertaking to cease a practice as well as the levying of fines. In 2015 UOKiK initiated 177 preliminary proceedings and 34 antitrust proceedings. Of the latter, 23 related to the abuse of a dominant market position, while 11 concerned prohibited agreements. The Office also received two applications for leniency from parties to an unlawful agreement which came forward to cooperate with the Office.

In soft interventions, on the other hand, the Authority calls on the undertaking to voluntarily change or eliminate an unfair practice. The advantage of this tool is that it solves problems more quickly than full-blown proceedings, which may be subject to judicial review. UOKiK conducted 58 such competition-related interventions last year, and brought 52 to a conclusion. “Soft interventions assume the common will of the Office and undertakings to eliminate an activity we are disputing. With the negotiating approach, nearly 100 percent of them complied with our recommendations” explains Bernadeta Kasztelan-Świetlik, Vice-President of UOKiK.

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