Polish Competition Authority Chief Seeks To Tackle Coronavirus-Related Price Increases
The president of UOKiK, the Polish competition authority, Tomasz Chróstny, has said that his office is doing what it can to combat "unjustified" food price increases relating to the coronavirus scare.
In an interview with dlahandlu.pl, Chróstny said that inflated price positioning is "another unfair practice that has emerged in connection with the epidemic", which has been seen in some food categories.
"This is once again preying on fear, so it is necessary to fight this practice," he told the publication. "Poland is one of the largest food producers in Europe, we are not in danger of shortages, and yet prices have risen sharply. Such drastic price increases in a short time have no economic justification, it is unfair."
UOKiK is stepping up its price monitoring, both online and through trade inspections, while it is also in discussions with the government about setting a maximum price for certain goods by means of regulation.
"We are talking about a solution that can be used in the event of further unjustified price increases for some product categories," Chróstny said. "But personally, I hope that dishonest entrepreneurs will stop abusing the freedom to set prices."
He added that UOKiK has "sent out a clear signal" that prices and margins on everyday products should remain at pre-epidemic levels, i.e. from February of this year.
© 2020 European Supermarket Magazine – your source for the latest retail news. Article by Stephen Wynne-Jones. Click subscribe to sign up to ESM: The European Supermarket Magazine.