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Uruguay: Beermaker denounces barriers to entry

 |  August 2, 2016

Miltour SA, the Uruguayan branch of Chile’s CCU brewery, has presented a complaint against Uruguay’s dominant brewers, Fábricas Nacionales de Cerveza (FNC), over alleged violations to Uruguay’s competition laws. The complaint will be reviewed by the country’s Commission for the Promotion and Defense of Competition.

Milotur has denounced a “very concentrated” market, where the FNC resembles a “quasi-monopoly”. The company has been accused of entering “exclusivity contracts with several businesses, which exclude our products from entering the market”. The Chilean-based group has also said that, where their products were in fact allowed to compete, they could detect a tendency towards “sales restrictions, such as excluding our product from refrigerators”.

The country’s competition regulator has admitted the case, calling on the accused to present a formal declaration. FNC has denied any wrongdoing, saying these exclusivity contracts “are legitimate”. The company has had previous brushes with competition authorities, with a Court having confirmed a $1.14 million dollar fine against the brewer as recently as March this year.

Full Content: El Observador

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