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JFTC renders a Recommendation to a department store, Sanyo -Marunaka K.K. against unfair trade practice

March 26/2004
Japan Fair Trade Commission

The Fair Trade Commission, following an investigation, today rendered a recommendation to Sanyo-Marunaka K.K. as they are in violation of Section 19 of the Antimonopoly Act (Paragraphs 1, 2 and 6 of the Specified Unfair Trade Practices in the Department Store Business, and Items 1 and 2 of Paragraph 14 concerning Unfair Trade Practices (abuse of dominant bargaining position) based on Section 48 (2) of said Act).

(NOTE) The “department store business” denotes a retail business in which many different kinds of products used regularly by consumers are sold in a store with a sales floor space of 3,000 square meters or more (1,500 square meter in cities,towns and villages other than special wards and ordinance-designated cities).

1. Concerned party

(1) Name: Sanyo-Marunaka K.K.
(2) Address: Okayama City
(3) Business: retail of foods, groceries, and clothing, etc.

2. Description of Violation

(1) Sanyo-Marunaka forced suppliers of foods, groceries and clothing, etc. (hereinafter “Suppliers”), which had an ongoing trade relation with and a bargaining position inferior to Sanyo-Marunaka, to discount delivery prices, returned commodities to them after purchase, and used employees, etc. dispatched by the Suppliers for the sales business of Sanyo-Marunaka.

(2) By taking advantage of the relationship in the delivery transaction, Sanyo-Marunaka forced the Suppliers to purchase menswear, etc. which are not related to the said transaction, and dispatch their employees for stocktaking work of Sanyo-Marunaka.

3. Summary of Measures to Eliminate the Violation

(1) Sanyo-Marunaka should refrain from the acts mentioned in 2 above.

(2) Sanyo-Marunaka should advise the Suppliers of the measures taken based on 3 (1) above and that it will refrain from any act similar to the acts described in 2 above.

(3) Sanyo-Marunaka should refrain from any act similar to the acts described in 2 above in the future.

(4) Sanyo-Marunaka should establish a code of conduct concerning compliance with the Antimonopoly Act to refrain from any act similar to the acts described in 2 above in the future, and take necessary measures to provide training in the Antimonopoly Act to its purchasing staff and conduct of periodical audits by its legal staff based on said code of conduct, and make the details of said measures known to the directors and employees of Sanyo-Marunaka without exception.

4. Deadline for accepting or rejecting the recommendation

 April 5, 2004

 (Where the recommendation is accepted, a decision that is the same as the recommendation will be made.
Where the recommendation is rejected, hearings will be initiated.)

*Every announcement is tentative translation. Please refer to the original text written in Japanese.

Japan Fair Trade Commission:

100-8987 1-1-1 Kasumigaseki, Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo,Japan
Tel: +81-3-3581-1998
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