Competition Challenge in The Netherlands

Deutsche Post World Net (DPWN) and Deutsche Post Selekt Mail Nederland CV filed a joint complaint with the European Commission alleging distortion of competition in The Netherlands' decision to delay opening its postal market to competition.

The Dutch government's decision to extend the mail monopoly indefinitely gives a competitive advantage to Post TNT of the Netherlands, say the complainants. The Dutch postal market was to be opened to competition on July 1, 2008.

Member states of the European Union may reserve the national postal market for one provider if such a move plays an essential role in financing the universal service. The DPWN and DP Selekt Mail complaint says statements by the Dutch government show that the decision to delay opening the market serves the interests of TNT, which is a violation of EU rules.

The Bonn-based group notes that Germany's postal market has been open to competition since January 1, 2008 and that TNT has been operating in Germany even before that, thus the Dutch government's allegation of insufficient competition in Germany are unfounded.

DP Selekt Mail and other companies have made extensive investments in anticipation of the liberalization of the Dutch postal market, points out DPWN.

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