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EURO: AGREEMENT ON GOOD PRACTICES BETWEEN SMES, CONSUMERS AND RETAILERS.

An assessment of the 1998 agreement shows that it had only a very limited impact. The level of public awareness of the European agreement and the national agreements it spawned is extremely low. Moreover, double pricing is generally only a reality among large distributors, small local retailers not yet responding systematically to consumers' expectations. This gap between small retailers and large distributors must now be bridged.Commitments.In order to remedy the shortcomings identified, retailers renew their commitment of 30 June 1998 to introduce double pricing. Moreover, retailers introducing double pricing in the course of this year, pledge to mark prices in such a way that the Euro prices are more visible than those in the national currency. To facilitate the adjustment by consumers, retailers will put simple tools at their disposal (at least until the end of June 2002) for comparing prices and checking conversion rates. Retailers also pledge not to take advantage of the introduction of the Euro to surreptitiously raise prices. To reflect they will make full use of the common European slogan: "New currency, stable prices".Consumer organisations meanwhile pledge to contribute to the efforts of other parties to raise awareness of the 1998 agreement. They will likewise co-operate with retailers and professional associations and federations in implementing the new commitments. The organisations signing the agreement also undertake to make use of Euro payment facilities forthwith, and to look closely at single currency prices to draft a scale of values in the new currency.The agreement was signed on 2 April by EuroCommerce, UEAPME (European Association of Craft, Small and Medium-sized Enterprises), ECTAA (Group of National Travel Agents' and Tour Operators' Associations within the EU), Hotrec (Hotels, Restaurants and Cafes in Europe), the oil industry lobby group EUROPIA, IEIC (European Inter-regional Institute of Consumer Affairs), AEC (Association of European Consumers), COFACE (Confederation of Family Organisations in the European Community), Inclusion Europe (The Association of persons with Intellectual disabilities and their families), VKI (Austrian Consumer Association), ANCC/COOP (National Association of Consumer co-operatives, Italia) and CLCV (Confederation Logement Cadre de Vie).

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Article Details
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Publication:European Report
Article Type:Brief Article
Geographic Code:4E
Date:Apr 7, 2001
Words:344
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