ŠIAULIAI CITY MUNICIPALITY DISCRIMINATED PRIVATE MANUFACTURERS IN THE HEAT SECTOR
On 31 March, the Council found that Šiauliai City Municipality prevented private manufacturers from entering heat market in Šiauliai city and, thus, breached Article 4 of the Law on Competition.
Municipal decisions created different competition conditions for private manufacturers willing to operate in Šiauliai City heat market and, eventually eliminated the competition in the mentioned market. Some of the manufacturers were forced to suspend their plans for heat production and sales due to the Municipality‘s ignorance of the Law on Heat Sector and the National Strategy as well as ungrounded delays. Meanwhile, the municipal company Šiaulių energija continued active participation in the process of the heat sector renovation.
“Public concerns about consumer protection are nothing more than just a poorly disguised fear to let competition into the markets so far dominated by municipal companies. Thus anti-competitive decisions “safeguard” consumers only against competition benefits, simultaneously “safeguarding” municipal companies against bankruptcy.” – says Šarūnas Keserauskas, the Chairman of the Council.
The Council obliged Šiauliai City Municipality to repeal competition-restricting decisions within one month after the Council’s decision is published on the authority’s website.