See version in english The Inaugural Global Merger Control Conference

Paris

L’inauguration de la Conférence Global Merger Control

Conférence inaugurale organisée par Concurrences en partenariat avec Paul Hastings.

OPENING REMARKS : NAVIGATING MERGER REGIMES ACROSS THE GLOBE

Pierre Kirch (Partner Paul Hastings, Paris/Brussels) and Bruno Lasserre (Chairman, French Competition Authority)

After expressing his thanks to Bruno Lasserre and Nicolas Charbit (Editor in chief of Concurrences Journal and President of the Institute of Competition law), Pierre Kirch briefly introduced the four topics that the panels would discuss. Mr. Kirch described various issues of concern to General Counsel of multinational companies, and, in particular, the fact that more than 120 countries in the world have merger control regimes, with no global harmonization whatsoever on a number of issues, including inter alia, minority shareholdings, the concept of “control,” the effective timetable of review procedures, etc. Given the “explosion” of merger control regimes, companies face issues of where to notify and when.

In his introductory keynote talk, Bruno Lasserre noted that France and many other countries are in the same “ship” trying to “navigate in uncharted waters.” Mr. Lasserre stated that the International Competition Network (“ICN”) has been a valuable instrument and a real accelerator in building consensus. Indeed, according to Mr. Lasserre, the ICN’s Recommended Practices reflect an attempt to create a common ground amongst members. The preparation of guidelines on critical and substantive aspects of merger control minimizes the burden of multiple filings and increased the effectiveness of control. The practical effect of this cooperation can be measured through cases in which US and EU agencies have been able to take a decision the same day. On the contrary, according to Mr. Lasserre, little has been done within Europe. While Europe has rules defining the allocation of cases to Brussels or between EU Member States, there are no coordinated rules among the national competition authorities on the time limits and nothing unites the substantive tests among them.

Photos © Léo-Paul Ridet.

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Speakers

  • Davis Polk & Wardwell (Menlo Park)
  • CRA International (London)
  • Paul Hastings (Washington)
  • Primerio
  • Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe (Paris)
  • Google (London)
  • UK Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) (London)
  • French State Council (Paris)
  • Paul Hastings (Brussels)
  • US Federal Trade Commission (FTC) (Washington DC)
  • French Competition Authority (Paris)
  • General Electric (Brussels)
  • Competition Commission of Mauritius
  • Nortons Incorporated
  • Sheppard Mullin (San Francisco)