Investigating competition issues in the Norwegian grocery sector

The Ministry of Trade, Industry and Fisheries has asked the Norwegian Competition Authority to contribute to the Government´s work in following up the Parliament decision to increase competition in the grocery sector. The deadline for the Authority´s contribution is October 1st 2018.

Plan for investigation >> (pdf in Norwegian)


The assignment from the ministry is given in a supplementary allocation letter (pdf in Norwegian).

According to this, the Parliament is of the opinion that measures proposed by the Government must give rise to increased competition that benefits the consumers. Furthermore, the Parliament states that no measures should be introduced that weakens competition in any part of the value chain for food.

– It is an important premise that consumer welfare is the overall goal of the work, says director Magnus Gabrielsen. This complies with the purpose of the Competition Act and the Competition Authority, which is to promote competition for the benefit of consumers, says Gabrielsen.


In the supplementary allocation letter there are four subjects that the Norwegian Competition Authority has been asked to give their professional contribution on:

  • Analysis of the conditions for competition in the grocery marked
  • Ban on unfair trading practices in the food supply chain
  • Analysis of prohibition of price discrimination by dominating suppliers
  • Conditions related to distribution


The contribution will be included in the ministry’s work with anti-competitive measures in the grocery sector. Deliveries from the Norwegian Competition Authority will include completed analyzes, preliminary analyzes and proposals for further work. Further dialogue between the Authority and the Ministry on these contributions will continue after October 1st.

In the supplementary allocation letter the Ministry has presupposed that part of the work should be carried out by external parties. In the plan, the Norwegian Competition Authority has proposed which parts should be carried out by external parties.

The Parliament’s recommendation

The Parliament asks the Government to suggest a law banning unfair trading practices in the food supply chain, together with an independent supervisorial body, but supervisorial alternatives may be investigated. The bill of law should be submitted as soon as possible, with effect by law within 2019.

The parliament asks the Government to investigate measures that will promote competition and facilitate start-ups and promote innovation in the food and grocery market, including prohibition of price discrimination from dominant suppliers and conditions linked with distribution. These measures should be reported back to the parliament as soon as possible.

Parlament decision (in Norwegian)

Avdelingsdirektør Magnus Gabrielsen.
Director Magnus Gabrielsen.

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