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The Fall of Agricultural Cartel Enforcement in Hungary

 |  October 30, 2014

Posted by Social Science Research Network

The Fall of Agricultural Cartel Enforcement in Hungary – Tihamer Toth (Competition Law Research Centre, Hungary ; Peter Pazmany Catholic University – Faculty of Law)

ABSTRACT: The paper gives an overview of the recent developments in competition law enforcement in the agricultural sector in jurisdictions like the U.S., the EU and Hungary. I examine critically the new Hungarian law exempting domestic agricultural collusion from the cartel prohibition that raises the standard of living of farmers. The implications of the broad agricultural exception and the fine immunity can be chilling. It is a clear political message to the Hungarian Competition Authority that Parliament would like to see an end to some cartel investigations. The latest development is that the Hungarian Competition Authority has adopted its termination order in the melon cartel case on the 12th of April 2013. With reference to the provision hindering the imposition of fines, the authority stressed that for public interest reasons it has decided to terminate the lengthy and costly investigation.