Prices for products that ‘are not worth the money’. Supervisory authorities charged with the protection of the economic interests of the public often scrutinize the price-value relation when supervising product prices. Some authorities exercise a broad mandate protecting ‘consumers’ on the basis of consumer protection law, while other authorities have a narrower mandate, focusing on ‘investors’ or ‘policy holders’ on the basis of sectorial regulation. Ultimately, they have in common that they police prices charged by companies for products using standards that compare the costs to retail customers against the benefits enjoyed by them, or more broadly, the distribution of economic surplus between companies and their customers.
This article is written by Melvin Tjon Akon, Attorney, PhD candidate and regulatory counsel