September 2002

Anticompetitive practices

The European Commission issues new explanatory brochure on block exemption regulation n° 1400/2002 on the motor vehicle sector bringing competition rules closer to consumers and market operators
European Commission - DG COMP (Brussels)
"New explanatory Brochure on Commission Block Exemption Regulation n° 1400/2002 on the motor vehicle sector: bringing competition rules closer to consumers and market operators"* On 30 September 2002, the Directorate General for Competition of the European Commission published an Explanatory (...)

The Netherlands Competition Authority establishes that the largest pig abattoir entered into restrictive agreements with smaller abattoirs (Dumeco)
Netherlands Authority for Consumers & Markets (The Hague)
NMa: Dumeco Must Amend Its Restructuring Agreements* Following information received from the sector, the Netherlands Competition Authority (NMa) has investigated whether the recent termination of the slaughtering activities of a number of smaller pig abattoirs contravenes the Competition Act. (...)

The French Competition Authority fines several manufacturers for having enforced a cartel agreement in the ball bearings sector (NSK France)
French Competition Authority (Paris)
Press Release published on the official website of the French Competition Authority. Agreement on price in the sector of ball bearings: the Conseil de la concurrence sentenced the main manufacturers for a total amount of approximately 19 million euros*. The Conseil de la Concurrence has (...)

Unilateral Practices

The Netherlands Competition Authority concludes that the municipality of Amsterdam has not abused its dominant position in renting its land through long-term leases (Vereniging Eigen Huis)
Netherlands Authority for Consumers & Markets (The Hague)
NMa: No Abuse of Dominant Position by Municipality Amsterdam* Following a complaint made by Vereniging Eigen Huis (an association representing homeowners), NMa has concluded that the municipality of Amsterdam has not abused its dominant position in renting its land through long-term leases. (...)

Mergers

The French Minister of Economy cleared a merger in the DIY products sector subject to termination of a franchise agreement (Mr Bricolage/Tabur)
French Competition Authority (Paris)
The operation Mr Bricolage acquired sole control of Tabur. Both parties were active in the distribution of DIY products, notably through integrated networks and franchises. The market concerned The market involved is the retail of DIY products through specialized superstores. Remedy: (...)

The French Minister of Economics cleared a merger in the sector of waste treatment subject to remedies aimed at limiting range effects (FCPR Partenaires Midcap/Galicier + Pressor)
French Competition Authority (Paris)
The operation By a letter dated of 20 September 2000, the Minister reached a decision of clearance, in which he authorised the acquisition of two goups, Pressor and Galicier, by Midcap following the commitments offered by the parties to remove competition concerns raised by the merger. The (...)

The US FTC imposes divestiture of assets for one product and licensing of patents for two other products prior to approving a merger in the pharmaceuticals industry (Amgen / Immunex)
Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld (Dallas)
Amgen Inc. and Immunex Corporation entered into a consent decree with the FTC on September 3, 2002 in order to proceed with the merger of the two pharmaceutical giants. To obtain clearance from the FTC, Amgen and Immunex agreed to divest Immunex’s business concerning the production of one (...)

The European Commission refers the examination of a proposed acquisition in the construction sector to the Dutch Competition Authority (Koninklijke BAM/Hollandsche Beton Groep)
European Commission - DG ECFIN
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European Commission - DG COMP (Brussels)
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European Commission - DG GROW
"Merger Control: Main developments between 1st September 2002 and 31st December 2002"* The Commission referred the proposed acquisition of the Dutch construction company Hollandsche Beton Groep N.V. (HBG) by rival Koninklijke BAM NBM N.V. (BAM) to the Dutch Competition Authority, giving the (...)

State Aid

The European Commission takes a negative decision concerning a State aid scheme ruling that the provisions exceed the scope of the regulation on the application of Articles 87 and 88 to small and medium-sized enterprises (Land of Saxony)
European Commission - DG COMP (Brussels)
"A scheme of the Land of Saxony in favour of small and medium enterprises: a clarification on the application of the block exemption regulation"* On 24 September 2002 the Commission took a final negative decision concerning a scheme of the Land of Saxony as far as the provisions exceed the (...)

Procedures

The ICN members go ahead for more intensive cooperation and worldwide implementation of competition principle
German Competition Authority (Bonn)
Competition authorities give go ahead for more intensive cooperation and worldwide implementation of competition principle* The competition authorities wish to improve their international cooperation and gain more acceptance worldwide for the principle of competition. At the first conference (...)

The Netherlands Competition Authority imposes fines for refusal to allow the interview of certain employees (Heijmans Beton- en Waterbouw)
Netherlands Authority for Consumers & Markets (The Hague)
NMa Fines Heijmans for Refusal to Co-operate* The Netherlands Competition Authority (NMa) has imposed a fine of three times EUR 4,500 (four-thousand-five-hundred euros) on Heijmans Beton- en Waterbouw for its refusal to allow NMa to interview certain of its employees. This is the maximum fine (...)

Regulatory

The German Competition Authority intends to prohibit the electricity network operator from charging electricity suppliers excessive metering and billing prices in the small customers sector (RWE Net)
German Competition Authority (Bonn)
Bundeskartellamt issues warning letter regarding excessive electricity metering and billing prices* The Bundeskartellamt intends to prohibit the electricity network operator RWE Net AG, Dortmund, from charging electricity suppliers excessive metering and billing prices in the small customers (...)

Public sector

The German Competition Authority rejects application for a review in the award proceedings for the introduction and operation of a distance-related toll on lorries on national motorway (AGES Maut System)
German Competition Authority (Bonn)
Bundeskartellamt rejects application for review in the “lorry toll” award proceedings* The Bundeskartellamt has rejected the application by AGES Maut System GmbH & Co. KG, Düsseldorf (AGES), for a review in the award proceedings for the introduction and operation of a distance-related toll on (...)

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