Brewer: "mores were different then"

23rd April 2007, Comments 0 comments

23 April 2007, AMSTERDAM – "The mores in commerce were different then," Heineken CEO Jean-François van Boxmeer said last week in response to the European Commission's verdict that Heineken and several other brewers formed a cartel on the Dutch beer market in the second half of the 1990s.

23 April 2007

AMSTERDAM – "The mores in commerce were different then," Heineken CEO Jean-François van Boxmeer said last week in response to the European Commission's verdict that Heineken and several other brewers formed a cartel on the Dutch beer market in the second half of the 1990s.

"The fine is too high," Van Boxmeer said. "They are suggesting that there was a solid price cartel which decided exactly how high prices should be. No such cartel ever existed."

The CEO did not want to go into detail on how business customs did dictate the situation in the 1996-1999 period.

Van Boxmeer's comments came after the Heineken shareholders' meeting last Thursday, the Financieele Dagblad reports.

Van Boxmeer says the environment in which brewers have been operating since 1999 has become must more competitive. "The mores were different then, as they were also different in 1990 and 1980. We just have to accept that."

Van Boxmeer said he was not pleased with the fact that the Commission's investigation took seven years and was focused on a period that he considers to be far in the past.

[Copyright Expatica News + ANP 2007]

Subject: Dutch news

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