EC Sues Hungary Over Building Materials 'Price Fixing'

EU

The European Commission decided on Friday to refer Hungary to the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) over rules penalizing companies for non-compliance with threshold prices set for sand, gravel, and cement, according to a report by state news wire MTI.

The EC said the Hungarian rules, which introduced "fixed prices" and required enterprises to maintain production levels, even if economically unsustainable, violated the principle of freedom of establishment and did "not appear justified or proportionate". 

It added that Hungary had failed to notify EU authorities of the planned measure as required by the EU Single Market Transparency Directive.

The EC launched an infringement procedure against Hungary regarding the measure in April 2022 and stepped up the procedure in January 2023.

The government rolled out the measure requiring companies to pay a 90pc "mining allowance" on the difference between revenue generated using their own prices and threshold prices set by decree in the summer of 2021 to curb runaway prices.

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