Serbian Regulator Says Serbian MK Group May Buy Hellenic Sugar

Serbia’s Commission for Protection of Competition said Sunoko d.o.o., the country’s biggest sugar producer, may buy Greece’s Hellenic Sugar Co. SA if it sells one of Hellenic’s two plants in Serbia.

The Novi Sad, Serbia-based company, part of MK Group d.o.o., has sought to buy Hellenic Sugar to expand output and exports from its four sugar plants that currently cover 50 percent of the market. The purchase was approved on condition that “in the case of a successful bid,” Sunoko sells one of Hellenic’s two plants in Serbia to keep its share of sugar-beet processing in the country to 65 percent, the regulator said in a statement on its website.

The Commission also said that Sunoko will need to submit detailed semi-annual reports to the authority about its production and sales, including prices at which it sells sugar in Serbia and abroad, until Serbia lifts all sugar import duties.

The regulator decided against the possible purchase in January 2012, after which the Belgrade-based Administrative Court overturned the decision in August. The Competition Commission said that it changed its position after Sunoko stopped selling sugar abroad at lower prices than on the domestic market.

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