Wal-Mart and Carrefour have been fined CNY9.5m over deceptive pricing practices

Wal-Mart and Carrefour have been fined CNY9.5m over deceptive pricing practices

China's National Development and Reform Commission has fined Carrefour and Wal-Mart Stores CNY9.5m (US$1.4m) for manipulating product prices in some of their stores.

The Commission announced on Saturday (19 February) that the penalty has been imposed on 19 outlets throughout the country, with each fined CNY500,000.

It said that Carrefour and Wal-Mart admitted their violation of the laws when the case came to light, apologised to consumers and actively took corrective measures, as well as implementing a 'five times the difference' compensation policy.

However, the Commission added that "the purpose of this heavy punishment is to regulate the behaviour of market players and to protect consumer interests, so related enterprises should draw lessons from it".

The charges follow customer complaints about overcharging on promotional items in late January.