RIYADH — The General Authority for Competition (GAC) slapped fines amounting to SR800000 ($213,000) on two Saudi companies for their violation of the Saudi Competition Law.

The Committee for Resolution of Competition Law Violations, under GAC, penalized Panda Retail Co. and Doorstep for Telecommunications and IT for breaching Article 7 of the Competition Law, the authority said in a statement on Sunday.

The authority decided to impose a fine of SR400,000 ($106.6,000) on each company, and ordered to publish the report of the penalty in the local media at their own expense.

According to the statement, the Board of Directors of the authority decided to take procedures for investigation, gathering evidence and investigation after notifying the violation against the two companies. Accordingly, the authority referred the violation to the Committee for Adjudication of Competition Law Violations, which in turn collected evidence and conducted the necessary investigations.

It was found in the investigations that the two companies violated Article 7 of the Competition Law by completing an acquisition deal without notifying GAC. Article 7 of the law mandates that establishments wishing to participate in the economic concentration process must inform the authority at least 90 days before its completion if the total value of annual sales exceeds an amount specified by the regulation.

The penal action is aligned with GAC duties to enforce the Competition Law, protect fair competition, fight monopolistic practices, and ensure procedure transparency, the statement pointed out. The authority called on all establishments to adhere to the Competition Law and its executive regulations, and to work in accordance with the spirit of fair competition that encourages consumer choices and support market growth and efficiency within the framework of justice and transparency. It also called on all establishments to review the compliance guide via the authority’s website.

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