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October 24, 2014
Saturday, May 10, 2014

Supermarkets fined $31M

Economy Minister Axel Kicillof unveils the fines yesterday.

For failing to fulfill the Price Watch programme

The federal government fined supermarkets more than 31 million pesos yesterday for failing to fulfill the Price Watch programme, which was reportedly followed an average 73 percent in the first quarter of the year.

Meanwhile, Economy Minister Axel Kicillof said small stores and markets will be added to the programme by creating the Federal Network of Proximity Business (COMPRAR).

“The level of compliance of the agreement reached an average 73 percent, while the fines were at 31.166 million pesos for all the supermarket brands that are part of the agreement,” Kicillof said at a press conference alongside Trade Secretary Augusto Costa. “Supermarkets will make 100 billion pesos this year so the sanctions are neither high nor low — they are fair.”

Walmart and Changomas had the lowest level of compliance — 58 percent — and because of that paid the largest fine — 11.826 million.

Coto led the government’s compliance ranking in the first quarter of the year with 83 percent and because of that it was slapped with the lowest fine (2.203 million pesos). Cencosud, which owns Disco, Vea and Jumbo, was fined 3.813, while Día was fined 3.813 million.

Kicillof said supermarkets can appeal the sanctions applied by the Trade Secretariat and anticipated suppliers and producers could also be fined if irregularities are found “in the complaints that are currently being analyzed.”

“The price programme has been sucessful because of the support of consumers, who are looking after their own money with the help of the government,” Kicillof said. “We aren’t the ones who establish prices increases.

There are currently 312 products included in the programme in large supermarkets, while 189 products are offered in smaller stores.

Herald with Télam,DyN

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