The results show an increase in the competition authority s performance, thus last year in the national courts 54 cases were examined in which the Competition Council was a plaintiff, a defendant or a third part. In 90% of the completed cases, the Council won. At the same time, the amount of the sanctions maintained by the courts exceeds with 21% the executed budget of the Competition Council for 2017. As a result of the irregularities detected by the supervisory body, the undertakings that have accepted deviations from the law were fined with 12.5 million MDL, the value of the sanctions paid in the state budget being doubled compared to 2016.
The number of international economic mergers notified to the Competition Council also increased, denoting an increase in the complexity of investigations and a greater accountability of companies.
The impact of the interventions of the Competition Council for the benefit of consumers through combating abusive practices amounted to almost 90 million MDL (cases of Chisinau Water Canal, Floresti Communal Services, etc.), and through fighting the cartels constituted 87 million MDL (bid rigging: for example, purchase of oil products etc.).
The number of ex officio investigations on horizontal hard-core agreements also increased about 3 times. Approximately 80% of the total number of the identified anti-competitive agreements cases was referred to bid rigging.
Compared with previous years, the number of SIRASM (Information System on Reporting and Notification of State Aid) users increased. Thus, about 88% of the reporting providers used the system. The largest share of the state aid was granted for regional development (84%) and the provision of SGEIs (Services of General Economic Interest) (8%).
Mrs.Viorica Cărare, the President of the Competition Council, said: "The figures show that the number and impact of the investigations initiated by the Council increased, while the investigation duration is in decrease. This speaks of the professionalism of our team. And leniency policies are fruitful - more and more companies are voluntarily eliminating irregularities and that is what we are pursuing: a correct compliance with the law and respectively, a healthy competitive environment. "
In order to open the economic sectors to competition the National Program on Competition and State Aid was approved by the Parliament of the Republic of Moldova. The document provides for a complex and strategic approach to the problems, objectives and actions to be accomplished in the period 2017-2020.
To ensure the good promotion of competition and state aid policies, 223 events were organized, attended by representatives of central and local public authorities, as well as representatives from business, academia, mass media etc.
The activity of the Competition Council is based on transparency and a better information and education of the public, thus 278 informative materials were published during 2017: 118 press releases, 51 decisions, 42 materials in the section Decisional Transparency and 67 materials in other columns.
In 2017, the Competition Council implemented 5 external assistance projects with the support of the development partners - the Delegation of the European Union to the Republic of Moldova and the World Bank Group.
Regarding efficiency, it is worth mentioning that the proportion between the impact on consumer welfare and the budget allocated for the activity of the Competition Council is 1 to 9, which means that for each one MDL used by the Competition Council from the state budget, the final consumer earned 9 MDL (consumers welfare - 177.4 million MDL vs. the budget of the Competition Council - 19.8 million MDL).