May 16, 2022

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Opposition agrees to regulate grocery trade – NRK Norway – Overview of news from various parts of the country

– Norway is one of the most expensive countries, with poor selection and very dissatisfied customers, we need to take action, says SV’s business policy spokesman Torgeir Knag Fylkesnes.

SV has partnered with Høgre, Frp, KrF, Venstre, Raudt and MDG on a deal to regulate an industry currently dominated by Norgesgruppen, Coop and Rema.

SV’s Business Policy Spokesman Torgeir Knag Fylkesnes is pleased with the vast majority.

Photo: Jawad Bursa / NTB

– I am very pleased to have gained a vast majority in Sorting in support of the reform of the grocery industry, says Philkesness.

In particular, the proposal is that they want to reduce the limit of competition law when a player is very dominant in the grocery market. They do not want an amendment to the law, but rather a sub-regulation with the requirement that there must be a real reason for the purchase differences.

Trust the low price

The party hopes the move will enable the store to offer cheaper food if all grocery chains lead to competitive prices at equal prices.

The Norwegian Competition Authority, a former employee of the Norwegian Competitiveness Authority, has revealed that NorcaseGroup, which owns Kiwi, Money and the Joker, receive up to 15 percent lower purchase prices than other grocery chains for the same product.

Lean Westcard-Haley (H), a warehousing representative on the business board, says the challenges in the grocery industry are big and complex.

– There are many reasons why competition is so bad, but the most important one is inequality in purchase price. The current situation makes it difficult, if not impossible, to challenge the Norwegian grocery industry to establish itself. We are currently down in trying to change that.

Sporting Lean Westcourt-Halle member of the Conservative Party

Lewing Westgard-Halle (H), a representative of Storting, hopes that this proposal will provide better competition and cheaper food in the store.

Photo: Håkon Mosvold Larsen / NTB

The Norwegian grocery industry today is dominated by Norgesgruppen, Rema 1000 and Coop. Rod thinks this is a big problem with very few actors and they have too much power. Mary Snow Martinusen, the party’s vice president and financial policy spokeswoman, thinks politicians may have taken a tough course.

– This is the first step on the road, and we need to take more action to break the concentration of ownership, money and power in the grocery industry.

Already in 2020, the party tried to announce in the grocery report in Storting that the Norwegian Competition Commission should overcome large price differences. They want to convey the message more clearly with a regulation for power to intervene against price differences.

The central party was surprised

The Center Party is also involved in the negotiations in Sorting. They say Wednesday worked towards a deadline, but was surprised to read in the media that other parties without a central party had agreed.

Wilfred Norland (SP), chairman of the Chamber of Commerce, said the ruling party was prepared to go further than the opposition on its proposals.

– The Central Party and the Labor Party openly agree on the purpose of the plan. It would be nice if there was something else. He tells NRK that many of the proposals mentioned have been written by us and the rest of these proposals have already been announced by the government.

Wilfried Norland at the Center Party

Wilfred Nordland (Sp), a member of the board of business in Sporting, hopes the group will involve all parties when it comes to suing the grocery industry.

Photo: Stian Lysberg Solum / NTB

He responded that the opposition had decided to close the case today.

– I post that others do not have time to send in their latest proposals before calling. When the panel presents the case, we hope that agreement will be reached on that proposal.

Positive Minister of Commerce and Industry

Minister of Commerce and Industry John Christian Westre (Labor) tells the NRK that the government is positive that there is a broad consensus on the issue in Sporting.

– The government has always aimed to mobilize all parties in Sorting around joint proposals to strengthen competition in the grocery market. So, I’m glad there seems to be agreement on good practices that contribute to lower prices and better selection in stores, he says.

John Christian Westrey

Trade and Industry Minister John Christian Westray (Labor) said the government would present its measures before the summer.

Photo: Stian Lysberg Solum / NTB

Westray also said that many of the measures in the agreement were measures taken by the government in its work.

– Many of these proposals have been initiated by the government and we are already working to present the next steps before the summer. I will definitely be involved in storting in the next jobs.

Coop are happy

The grocery chain coupe, which had a market share of nearly 30 percent last year, has previously been criticized for large differences in purchase prices.

Coop’s communications manager, Bjørn Takle Friis, welcomed the opposition’s presentation and called it “wonderful news.”

– Transferring power to the consumer is music for the consumer-owned coupe. We hope this will limit the power of Norgesgruppen and larger suppliers and lead to lower prices for customers. Coop promises to lower prices if he gets reasonable purchase prices, he tells the NRK.

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