NMa Concludes Investigation into Prices in the Hospitality Industry
Following an investigation, the Netherlands Competition Authority (NMa) has concluded that the price increases in the hospitality industry are not the result of anti-competitive recommendations which Koninklijke Horeca Nederland (KHN) (the umbrella organisation representing undertakings in the hospitality industry) gave its members. The many reports of price increases in the hospitality industry, following the introduction of the euro, were the reason for the investigation. NMa has ceased its investigation, but remains alert to reports which might point to an infringement of the Competition Act.
NMa has warned the branch organisation KHN about the advice it gave its members to pass on the increase in duties on spirits, which took effect on 1 January 2003. At the request of NMa, KHN corrected this by drawing its members attention in Horeca Nederland, its magazine for members, to the fact that recommending that cost increases be passed on is prohibited under the Competition Act.
NMa may impose fines for infringements of the Competition Act. In this case, NMa will not do so. The gravity of the infringement, in addition to the fact that NMa has to select the cases to which people and resources are allocated, played a role in this.