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Enterprises strive to comply with competition and consumer legislation

26. oktober 2012

The purpose of the Danish Competition Act (konkurrenceloven) and Danish consumer legislation is to prevent the restriction of efficient competition, to create a level playing field for enterprises and to protect consumers.

The Danish Competition and Consumer Authority has interviewed just over 1,800 Danish enterprises about their efforts to comply with the competition and consumer legislation.

According to themselves, most Danish enterprises comply with the competition and consumer legislation. Approximately nine out of ten enterprises state that ethics is a factor in their compliance with the rules. The enterprises state that commercial benefit is also a factor. Especially, the risk of a customer backlash and a resulting loss of earnings deter the enterprises from breaking the law. The risk of being fined by the authorities or facing civil proceedings/claims for damages are also factors.

Seventy-one per cent of enterprises have initiated measures to ensure compliance with the consumer legislation. As regards the Competition Act, this applies to 41 per cent. Most enterprises use external advisers. Enterprises that have not initiated any measures state that they rely solely on their common sense.

The enterprises’ legislative knowledge may also affect their legislative compliance. Fifty-three per cent of enterprises respond that they have a very good or fair knowledge of the consumer legislation, including the marketing rules. As regards the Competition Act, this figure is 31 per cent. A test of the enterprises’ knowledge about different types of breaches of competition law, including cartels, reveals an overall good understanding of price fixing, market sharing and limitation of output. The test shows a lesser understanding of the consumer legislation but this may be due to the fact that the test questions on the consumer legislation were more detailed than the questions regarding the Competition Act.

Forty-three per cent of enterprises believe that other enterprises in their industry are currently breaching the Competition Act by participating in cartels. Within the past five years, 16 per cent of enterprises have experienced illegal price agreements. Almost 20 per cent of enterprises think that enterprises in their industry often or very often fail to comply with the consumer legislation.

For further information please contact Head of Section Andreas Kryger Jensen at + 45 4171 5013. 

Download summary and main conclusions of "The efforts of Danish enterprices in complying with competition and consumer legislation"