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Carrefour Faces Fine on Pricing in China Store, Xinhua Says

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Dec. 17 (Bloomberg) -- Carrefour SA, the world’s second largest retailer, will be fined after local inspectors found a store in northern China had charged consumers incorrect prices, Xinhua News Agency reported.

Carrefour will receive a fine of 50,000 yuan ($8,000) to 500,000 yuan, Xinhua reported yesterday, citing Song Jianhu, an official of the pricing bureau in Taiyuan, a city capital of Shanxi province. Dai Wei, vice president of Carrefour China, has agreed to accept punishment from the bureau, Xinhua cited Song as saying.

Carrefour has been in contact with the Taiyuan price bureau on how the matter will be handled and will continue to cooperate with the department, Liu Huanyu, a spokeswoman for Blue Focus, Carrefour’s external press relations agency in China said. “It hasn’t been decided whether there will be a fine,” she said.

A consumer complained to regional authorities after noticing a discrepancy between the price displayed on the shelf and that charged by the cashier at the Carrefour outlet, Xinhua said. Carrefour last week said it apologized for the error, which was an individual case and an “unintentional working mistake.”

The Taiyuan outlet was also found to have used misleading advertising, failed to provide accurate information regarding sales and allowed goods to be produced in areas that were inconsistent with the company’s specifications, Xinhua reported today.

Carrefour sent a team to check the store and to make sure it follows company processes, the retailer said in last week’s statement.

To contact the reporter on this story: Anjali Cordeiro in Hong Kong at acordeiro2@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Stephanie Wong at swong139@bloomberg.net

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