Nestlé has been fined by Turkey’s antitrust regulator for violating national competition regulations, while Danone faces no penalties.

The Aero chocolate maker was found to have breached Turkey’s law on the Protection of Competition, according to investigation results posted today (5 January) on the website of Rekabet Kurumu, the country’s competition watchdog.

Rekabet Kurumu concluded that Nestlé had broken Article 4 of the legislation, which prohibits any decision that could “likely [affect] the prevention, distortion or restriction of competition directly or indirectly in a particular market for goods or services”.

According to the regulator, the Fitness cereal producer violated the law by “determining the resale prices of its distributors and imposing regional and customer restrictions on its distributors”.

Nestlé now faces a fine of TI260m ($8.7m) for its actions.

An oral defence hearing for Nestlé is due to take place on 6 February.

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By GlobalData

In a statement sent to Just Food, the company said: “We are aware of the [Turkish Competition Authority]’s decision and will review the detailed report once available, and defend our case.”

Nestlé had been under investigation, alongside dairy giant Danone and four other Turkish food companies, for the alleged violation of competition laws on sharing pricing information. The other companies examined were Turkish confectionary and savoury snacks producer Eti Gida, and consumer-goods manufacturer Horizon Fast Consumption.

Danone was found not to have violated any national competition regulations, Rekabet Kurumu said in its online notice.  

Eti and Horizon Fast Consumption, on the other hand, were both found to have made similar breaches to Nestlé and were given fines of Tl36m and Tl55m, respectively.

This week, the regulator also announced it was to charge Untad tortilla brand owner Aksaray Unlu Mamulleri Food Industry and Trade TI2.9m for breaking multiple competition regulation agreements.

It also plans to fine Turkish honey producer Binboğa Bal TI3m for determining buyer resale prices.