The French Competition Authority (FCA) has recently issued an opinion closing the sector inquiry it launched in the payment sector in January 2020. The FCA’s report mainly focuses on the disruption brought by new technologies and new market players in the sector, in particular BigTech companies. (...)
Back in 2020, the French Competition Authority (“FCA”) had announced, in its annual priorities, its interest in the competition implications of the digital revolution in the financial sector, notably in the context of the growth of FinTech, the introduction of blockchain technology and the (...)
On 29 April The French Competition Authority (FCA) published its report on the Fintech sector. This report follows its payment sector inquiry launched in January 2020, which primarily focused on the disruption brought by new technologies and new market players.
In this report the Authority (...)
More Money and New Digital Tools for Competition Bureau in Federal Budget*
Funding for Canada’s Competition Bureau is set to increase by more than one third, the government announced in the federal budget for 2021-2022. The budget proposes to increase the Bureau’s budget by $96 million over five (...)
Background: European Parliament and Council Directive (EU) 2019/1 ("ECN+") required EU Member States to adopt, by February 4, 2021, minimum standards related to national competition authority ("NCA") antitrust enforcement. ECN+ aims to promote cooperation among NCAs and the European (...)
On 29 April 2021, the Spanish Royal Decree-Law 7/2021 entered into force, modifying the Spanish Competition Act (“LDC”) due to the transposition of the Directive 2019/1 – known as the “ECN+ Directive” – which aims to achieve a more effective application of competition rules by the National (...)
On 28 April 2021, Royal Decree-Law 7/2021, of 27 April, was published in Spain’s Official State Journal (RD 7/2021). RD 7/2021 has the aim of transposing into Spanish legislation a number of EU directives, including Directive (EU) 2019/1 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 11 (...)
Croatia adopts revised Competition Act 2021*
The Act on the Amendments to the Competition Act was published in Official Gazette 41/2021 on 16 April 2021 and enters into force on 24 April 2021. In compliance with the rule against retroactivity, which prohibits the imposition of ex post facto (...)
On 25 April 2021, the Italian Government submitted its Recovery and Resilience National Plan ("PNRR") to the national Parliament, which included proposals on competition law reform by the Italian Competition Authority ("ICA").
Key takeaways Reforming competition law is among the priorities of (...)
On April 23, 2021, President Biden signed into law two bipartisan bills aimed at reducing prescription drug prices by supporting generic and biosimilar alternatives to branded drugs.
The Ensuring Innovation Act supports generic drugs by clarifying the technical qualifications for earning (...)
The CCI announced in April that it was in the process of reviewing and revising the confidentiality regime, based on its enforcement experience over the last 10 years. It published draft amendments to the relevant provisions in the General Regulations, and has invited public comments on these (...)
On 7 April 2021, the Digital Markets Unit ("DMU") was launched within the Competition and Markets Authority ("CMA"). The DMU will, in the future, be tasked with oversight of the UK’s new digital regulatory regime, with powers and duties enshrined in legislation.
Key takeaways The DMU has (...)
Collusion on office equipment market - decision of the President of UOKiK* Collusion on office equipment market - decision of the President of UOKiK Fellowes Poland for many years imposed minimum prices on distributors for resale of office equipment on the Internet. Tomasz Chróstny, President of (...)
CCPC seeks High Court order on Coach House agreement*
In April 2019, the Competition and Consumer Protection Commission (CCPC) opened an investigation into suspected anti-competitive practices by Chairs Limited, which trades under the name “Coach House” in the Republic of Ireland. Coach House is (...)
Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (Canberra)
Australia352 contributions74466 visits
Country Press Australia members can collectively bargain with Google and Facebook*
The ACCC has granted interim authorisation for Country Press Australia (CPA) members to collectively negotiate with Facebook and Google over payments to publishers for their news content that appears on the (...)
The joined cases were brought before the Administrative Court of Cyprus (hereinafter the “Court”) by ExxonMobil Cyprus Ltd, Hellenic Petroleum Cyprus Ltd, Petrolina (Holdings) Public Ltd and Coral Energy Products Cyprus Ltd (hereinafter the “petroleum companies”) against the Commission for the (...)
On April 2021, the Tribunal Superior de Justicia de Cataluña (High Court of Catalonia, the “High Court”) annulled an infringement decision (the “Decision”) issued by the Autoridad Catalana de la Competencia (Catalan Competition Authority, the “CCA”) on July 2018 against the Asociación Profesional de (...)
In its decision of 28 April 2021, the Belgian Competition Authority ("BCA") considered that the commitments offered by Carrefour and Provera under the purchase alliance probe were proportionate and suitable to address potential restrictions of competition. Following Carrefour’s divestment offer, (...)
On 28 April, the European Commission adopted a decision imposing fines on a series of investment banks relating to the trading of Supra-sovereign, Sovereign and Agency (“SSA”) bonds.
In the first decision, adopted on 28 April 2021, the Commission imposed total fines of € 28 million on (...)
In April and May 2021 the European Commission ("EC") announced the imposition of fines totalling almost €400 million on banks implicated in two separate cartels relating to bond trading. In a separate development, the EC took unprecedented action to exclude a number of international banks from (...)
The CNMC initiates disciplinary proceedings against Audax Renovables S.A. for alleged practices prohibited by the Anti-Trust Law*
- It is investigating if it used deceit and fraud in its favour to convince household customers of electricity and gas companies to switch their suppliers
On 20 April 2021, the EC issued its settlement decision by which it fined Deutsche Bahn (DB) and Société Nationale des Chemins de fer belges/Nationale Maatschappij der Belgische Spoorwegen (SNCB) a total of approximately EUR 48 million for participating in a cross-border customer allocation (...)
On April 20, 2021, the Turkish Competition Authority (“Authority”) announced on its website that the Turkish Competition Board (“Board”) had launched a full-fledged investigation against thirty-two undertakings for gentlemen’s agreements in labor markets across Turkey, in order to determine whether (...)
Antitrust: Commission fines three EU railway companies €48 million for customer allocation cartel*
The European Commission has fined railway companies Österreichische Bundesbahnen (ÖBB), Deutsche Bahn (DB) and Société Nationale des Chemins de fer belges / Nationale Maatschappij der Belgische (...)
The court leaves effective a decision of the Competition Council on involvement of SIA “Rīgas satiksme” in the so-called nano water acquisition bid-rigging*
On 9 April, the Senate of the Supreme Court rejected the cassation claim of Riga Municipality capital company SIA “Rīgas satiksme” on the (...)
AdC issues Statements of Objections for anticompetitive agreement in the labour market for the first time*
The AdC (Portuguese Competition Authority) has issued for the first time Statements of Objections for an agreement not to hire workers, in this case involving the Portuguese Professional (...)
Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (Canberra)
Australia352 contributions74466 visits
Competition exemptions in the time of COVID-19*
In a six week period from mid-March 2020, the ACCC received 33 applications for authorisation of competitor collaborations to deal with disruption and risks arising from the COVID-19 pandemic. In response to this unprecedented number of urgent (...)
Irish subsidiary companies should be aware that they may be ordered to pay fines or compensation as a result of a parent company breaching competition law, and corporate groups should take this risk into account in the design of intra-group operations and competition law compliance programmes. (...)
This case summary aims to shed light on the Turkish Competition Board’s (“Board”) DYO Decision, whereby the Board imposed an administrative fine of TL 21,036,866.58 to DYO Boya Fabrikaları Sanayi ve Ticaret A.Ş. (“DYO”), a major paint supplier in Turkey, on the ground that DYO has violated Article 4 (...)
On 15 April 2021, the European Court of Justice ("ECJ") handed down its ruling on Italmobiliare’s appeal against European Commission decision AT.39563, finding a cartel in the retail food packaging sector. The ECJ rejected Italmobiliare’s argument that it should benefit from immunity as regards (...)
On 24 June 2015, the EC fined 10 manufacturers of retail food packaging trays a total of EUR 115.8 million for having participated in a single and continuous infringement consisting of five separate cartels aimed at fixing prices, allocating customers and markets, bid-rigging and exchanging (...)
On April 13, 2021, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit upheld the Federal Trade Commission’s ruling that generic drug maker Impact Laboratories, LLC (now owned by Amneal Pharmaceuticals) engaged in an anticompetitive “reverse payment” settlement with brand manufacturer Endo (...)
On April 13, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit affirmed the Federal Trade Commission’s decision that Impax Laboratories entered an anticompetitive “reverse payment” settlement with Endo Pharmaceuticals. This case was the FTC’s first fully litigated reverse payment case since the (...)
The Background: In the Supreme Court’s landmark 2013 decision in FTC v. Actavis, the Court determined that large payments by branded drugmakers to potential generic entrants to settle patent disputes could be anticompetitive. It instructed district courts to apply the "rule of reason" (...)
On 13 April 2021, the German Federal Court of Justice (“BGH”) rejected a follow-on damages claim filed against truck manufacturer Daimler in relation to the European Commission’s ("Commission") Trucks decision. Nevertheless, it is generally seen as a ruling favorable for plaintiffs seeking cartel (...)
The President of UOKiK brings charges of limiting competition against basketball clubs* President of UOKiK Tomasz Chróstny has initiated antitrust proceedings against the Energa Basket Liga and sixteen basketball clubs. The subject matter of the proceedings is the establishment of principles of (...)
According to a press release of the German Federal Cartel Office (“FCO”) dated 12 April 2021, the FCO terminated proceedings against household appliances producer Liebherr after Liebherr agreed to change its sales conditions. The FCO had initiated proceedings in response to complaints about a new (...)
A few days ago, the State Administration for Market Regulation (“SAMR”) and Shanghai Administration for Market Regulation (“Shanghai AMR”) successively issued two administrative decisions punishing two Internet platform companies for engaging in “either-or choice” practices (a type of exclusive (...)
On July 29, 2019 a complaint was brought to the Turkish Competition Authority’s (“Authority”) attention, which alleged that certain undertakings operating in the welding sector acted together and subsequently violated the Law No. 4054 on the Protection of Competition (“Law No. (...)
Lithuanian Competition Authority will have to redecide on individualisation of fines for cartelists
The Supreme Administrative Court of Lithuania (Court) rejected the appeal of the Lithuanian competition authority and upheld the decision of the court of first instance which ordered the (...)
This ruling is part of a case that has been going on for years. It concerns a cartel in the cold storage sector. The background to the case is as follows. Four companies from this sector were fined for three different cartel violations with fines ranging from €450,000 to €9.6 million. In addition (...)
The Competition Council has opened an investigation on the market of production and marketing of poultry meat*
The Competition Council has launched an investigation aimed at a possible anti-competitive behaviour of some undertakings operating on the market of production and / or marketing the (...)
FAS Russia fined apple $12 million us dollars*
On April 26, 2021, the FAS Russia imposed on Apple Inc. a turnover fine of 906,299,392.16 rubles (over $12 million) for violating antimonopoly legislation.
In August 2020, the FAS Russia completed the consideration of the antitrust case against (...)
Antitrust: Commission sends Statement of Objections to Apple on App Store rules for music streaming providers*
The European Commission has informed Apple of its preliminary view that it distorted competition in the music streaming market as it abused its dominant position for the distribution (...)
Danish Competition and Consumer Authority (Copenhagen)
Denmark125 contributions34119 visits
Danish Competition Appeals Tribunal: FK Distribution has abused its dominant position*
The Danish Competition Appeals Tribunal has upheld a June 2020 decision by the Danish Competition Council stating that FK Distribution abused its dominant position on the market for distribution of (...)
On 28 April 2021, the ACCC released its second interim report as part of the five-year Digital Platform Services Inquiry, which examines the competition and consumer issues associated with the distribution of mobile apps to users of smartphones and other mobile devices.
In this second interim (...)
By a decision handed down in the Google/Enel X case, the Italian Competition Authority (ICA) has fined Alphabet Inc., Google LLC and Google Italy Srl (hereinafter Google) for infringing Article 102 TFEU. Google bused its dominant position because not allowing the release of JuicePass, an app (...)
On 27 April 2021, the Italian Competition Authority (ICA) fined Google for its refusal to publish an app developed by Enel X Italia (“JuicePass”) on Android Auto allowing electric vehicle drivers to search and book an electric charging point while driving.
Android Auto is a specific feature (...)
On the 27th April 2021, the Danish Competition Appeals Tribunal (“DCAT”) upheld a June 2020 decision by the Danish Competition Council (“DCC”). The DCC concluded that FK Distribution (FK), as the biggest distributor of unaddressed mail (print circulars) in Denmark, had abused its dominant position (...)
On 27 April 2021, the Italian Competition Authority (“ICA”) imposed a fine of over € 102 million on Alphabet Inc., Google LLC and Google Italy S.r.l. (collectively, “Google”) after concluding that Google had infringed Article 102 TFEU by refusing to include in Google’s own Android Auto app a third (...)
The Development: China’s Ningbo Intermediate People’s Court ruled that Hitachi Metals ("Hitachi") allegedly abused its dominance when it refused to license patents necessary for the production of sintered neodymium-iron-boron ("sintered NdFeB").
The Significance: This is the first case (...)
While reporting on the initial media news in my earlier blog on the same topic published on 23 April 21 , I had promised to come back with a detailed reporting on the above judgment which was then not (...)
Mere pendency of some issues before the Hon’ble Supreme Court of India (“Supreme Court”), or any of the High Courts does not necessarily bar CCI from exercising jurisdiction otherwise vested with it under the Act.
Whatsapp LLC (“WhatsApp”) is the proprietor of the popular (...)
FAS initiated a case against Google LLC*
According to the Authority, the company abuses its dominant position in the market of YouTube video hosting services
The reason for the investigation was the application of the Regional Public Organization “Center for Internet Technologies” (ROCIT), (...)
Roland UK ("Roland") appealed the level of the penalty imposed by the Competition and Markets Authority ("CMA") for engaging in resale price maintenance ("RPM") in relation to the supply of electronic drums. Roland argued that the Competition Appeal Tribunal ("CAT") should reduce the penalty (...)
In the latest of a line of cases involving the liquor sector, the CCI found that a number of exclusive licensees for the wholesale trade in country liquor in the state of Uttar Pradesh had not abused their dominant position in failing to source liquor from the Informant, Starlight Bruchem Ltd. (...)
In recent years GOOGLE LLC (GOOGLE) has faced several infringement procedures before EU National Competition Authorities and the European Commission with regards to various claims of anticompetitive behavior in relation to abuse of its dominant position in European markets. Recently, GOOGLE (...)
Hamburg Commissioner for Data Protection and Freedom of Information
3 contributions450 visits
The Hamburg Commissioner for Data Protection and Freedom of Information (HmbBfDI) opened proceedings against Facebook Ireland Ltd. with the aim of issuing an immediately enforceable order with the (...)
On 12 April 2021, the German competition authority ("FCO") closed its investigation against Liebherr, a producer of household appliances, without a fine after Liebherr agreed to abandon or amend certain clauses in its newly introduced distribution model which, in the FCO’s view, discriminated (...)
Filing a criminal complaint against another enterprise in the same sector cannot be said to have been done with a view to oust competition from the relevant market in the absence of any additional evidence to indicate contraventions of Section 3 and/or 4 of the Act.
BRIEF FACTS (...)
After a lengthy investigation, which started in January 2016, the Competition Commission of India (CCI) rejected allegations by the Tamil Nadu Power Producer Association that Chettinad International Coal Terminal Pvt. Ltd. (CICTPL) had abused its dominant position in the provision of coal (...)
The consumer, based on his requirements / commercial considerations, has the freedom to specify and choose the kind of service, machineries, timelines, mode, and the manner in which it requires the same, provided that no provision of the Act is violated. The public procurement (...)
The UK Government has launched the long-awaited Digital Markets Unit (DMU) to “help make sure tech giants such as Facebook and Google cannot exploit their market dominance.” The DMU, based in the Competition Markets Authority (CMA), kicked off its work in shadow, non-statutory form on 7 April (...)
United Kingdom’s Competition Authority (CMA) (London)
United Kingdom338 contributions86499 visits
Imprivata’s purchase of Isosec raises competition concerns*
The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) has found that Imprivata’s proposed acquisition of Isosec raises competition concerns.
Imprivata and Isosec provide secure authentication management solutions to healthcare providers in (...)
On 29 april 2021, following the release of the widely commented european commission guidance on art. 22 of the EU merger regulation (eumr), the Luxembourg Competition Council published a statement on the recent policy change.
In addition to explaining the key characteristics of the European (...)
The Autorité de la concurrence clears, subject to the divestment of assets in Île-de-France, the takeover of Suez RV OSIS by SARP, a subsidiary of Veolia*
On 5 February 2021, the European Commission referred to the Autorité de la concurrence the examination of the takeover by SARP, a subsidiary (...)
Semiconductor industry: Bundeskartellamt clears the proposed acquisition of Dialog Semiconductor PLC by Renesas Electronics Corporation*
The Bundeskartellamt has today cleared plans by the Japanese company Renesas Electronics Corporation to acquire all shares and sole control of Dialog (...)
The Autorité de la concurrence clears the takeover of Prisma Media (Ça m’intéresse, Capital, Cuisine Actuelle, Femme Actuelle, Gala, Télé Loisirs…) by Vivendi.*
On 24 March 2021, the Vivendi group notified the Autorité of the exclusive control acquisition of the Prisma Media press group.
At the end (...)
FTC Requires Divestitures as Condition of Casey’s General Stores, Inc.’s Acquisition of Buck’s Intermediate Holdings, LLC*
Order preserves competition in local fuel markets in Nebraska and Iowa
Casey’s General Stores, Inc., Buck’s Intermediate Holdings, LLC, and Steven Buchanan, have agreed to (...)
Danish Competition and Consumer Authority (Copenhagen)
Denmark125 contributions34119 visits
The Danish Competition Council has approved Polaris Private Equity IV K/S’ acquisition of the bus companies Egons A/S, Larsenbus ApS, Papuga Bus A/S, and Papuga A/S On 23 March 2021, the Danish Competition and Consumer Authority (hereinafter “DCCA”) received a complete notification of Polaris (...)
The CCI approved the acquisition by Tata Digital Limited (TDL) of up to 64.3% of the total share capital of Supermarket Grocery Supplies Limited (SGS) and a potential subsequent acquisition by SGC of sole control over Innovative Retail Concepts Private Limited (IRC). TDL provides technology (...)
The CNMC conducts a detailed analysis of the Altima Group’s acquisition of Funeraria Juanals*
- The transaction seeks to have Elysius Europa, S.L., the parent company of the Altima Group, which is jointly controlled by Albia Gestión de Servicio S.L.U. and Grup VFV, S.L., acquire exclusive (...)
The CNMC imposes a fine of 850,000 euros on Repsol Comercial de Productos Petrolíferos, S.A.* In 2014, Repsol acquired control of Societat Catalana de Petrolis, S.A. (Petrocat) The CNMC authorised the purchase, contingent on the oil company fulfilling a series of voluntary conditions. Repsol (...)
Agricultural trade: RaiWa Kassel can acquire 19 locations of RWZ Cologne – Bundeskartellamt allows merger only after changes to merger plans*
The Bundeskartellamt has today cleared the acquisition of 19 locations of the agricultural cooperative Raiffeisen Waren-Zentrale Rhein-Main eG (RWZ), (...)
The European Commission opens a review of Illumina’s acquisition of Grail under the procedure of Article 22 of the 2004 Merger Regulation*
Following the referral request submitted by the Autorité de la concurrence, which was joined by several Member States of the European Economic (...)
On 23 March 2021, the European Commission (“Commission”) published Guidance outlining its new approach in accepting and encouraging referrals under Article 22 of the Merger Regulation of deals that fail to meet either the EU or Member State turnover thresholds but that nonetheless affect (...)
In a controversial move, the European Commission (the Commission) announced on 20 April 2021 that it would review the proposed acquisition of cancer detection test start-up Grail by genomics firm Illumina, both of the US. The Commission acted on a request of France, which was backed by three (...)
United Kingdom’s Competition Authority (CMA) (London)
United Kingdom338 contributions86499 visits
Bellis’ purchase of Asda raises some competition concerns*
The CMA has found that Bellis’ completed £6.8bn purchase of Asda could lead to higher petrol prices in some parts of the country.
The Issa Brothers and private equity firm TDR Capital purchased Asda through jointly owned company Bellis. (...)
The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission ("ACCC"), German Federal Cartel Office and UK Competition Markets Authority have released a joint statement on merger control enforcement. The statement highlights the agencies’ united view on the importance of rigorous merger control (...)
Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (Canberra)
Australia352 contributions74466 visits
Landmark joint statement on merger control enforcement from ACCC, UK’s CMA and Germany’s Bundeskartellamt*
The ACCC, the UK’s Competition and Markets Authority and Germany’s Bundeskartellamt have today issued a joint statement highlighting the importance of rigorous and effective merger (...)
Netherlands Authority for Consumers & Markets (ACM) (The Hague)
Netherlands191 contributions31597 visits
European Commission to investigate acquisition of pharmaceutical firm GRAIL by biotech firm Illumina*
The European Commission will investigate the acquisition of US pharmaceutical company GRAIL by US biotechnology company Illumina. Various European countries, including the Netherlands, support (...)
For the first time in Finnish merger control history, parties to a merger committed to an upfront-buyer provision. On 19 April 2021, the Finnish Competition and Consumer Authority (“FCCA”) approved the merger between Altia Oyj (“Altia”) and Arcus ASA (“Arcus”) subject to conditions.
Both Altia and (...)
The CNMC initiates disciplinary proceedings against Albia Gestión de Servicios, S.L.U., a subsidiary of the Santa Lucía group.* The company did not notify the CNMC of its purchase of the funeral services company Tanatoria Móstoles, S.L. before acquiring it in 2019. Companies that exceed certain (...)
On 15 April 2021, the Competition Board (the Board) unconditionally approved Regal Beloit Corporation’s acquisition of sole control over Rexnord Corporation’s process and motion control (PMC) business segment.
The transaction concerns an acquisition carried through reverse Morris trust (...)
The merger of Altia and Arcus is cleared after commitments*
The Swedish Competition Authority clears the merger of Altia and Arcus. The merger is cleared on the condition that Altia and Arcus implement voluntary commitments that remedy the negative effects on competition that could have arisen (...)
On 6th April 2021, the French Competition Authority unconditionally cleared the acquisition of joint control over a local semi-public company active in the building sector (SEMCODA) by the Departement de l’Ain, Adestia (a Caisse des Dépôts et des Consignations subsidiary, a public long-term (...)
On 5 April 2021, the Indonesian Competition Commission ("KPPU") imposed fines totalling IDR 3.2 billion (approximately USD 221,000) on one Japanese and two Indonesian companies for failing to notify their respective transactions in a timely fashion. Key takeaways The Indonesian merger regime (...)
Responding to an appeal against the French Competition Authority’s ("FCA") first referral of a concentration below national merger control thresholds to the European Commission, the Conseil d’Etat declared it does not have jurisdiction to rule in these cases.
Key takeaways The French Supreme (...)
The European Commission ("EC") is shifting its approach with respect to the referral mechanism under Article 22 of the EU Merger Regulation 139/2004 (the "EUMR") and now – at least in certain circumstances – encourages referrals from Member States even where the national filing thresholds are not (...)
State aid: Commission approves €12 million coronavirus damage compensation and €255.5 million of liquidity support to SATA Air Açores and Azores Airlines in Portugal; extends ongoing in-depth investigation to planned restructuring aid*
The European Commission has approved €12 million in Portuguese (...)
This article has been nominated for the 2022 Antitrust Writing Awards. Click here to learn more about the Antitrust Writing Awards.
For many Britainophiles in the EU, the noise of the Brexiteers and their shouting about “world-beating Britain” during the last five years of the departure process (...)
State Aid and Essential National Interest*
State aid should support outcomes that the market by itself cannot achieve. This implies that State aid that is restricted to only one or a few undertakings is unlikely to be capable of delivering the desired outcome. Yet, sometimes (...)
A Rare Commission Decision on an SGEI Measure that Could Have Been Exempted from Notification*
A public service obligation must be imposed by an act of entrustment that describes in detail the terms of the obligation, identifies the undertaking that offers the service and lays down procedures (...)
ESA approves Norwegian aid scheme for alternative fuels infrastructure to reduce greenhouse gas emissions*
The EFTA Surveillance Authority (ESA) has today approved a Norwegian aid scheme to support private sector investments in own-use alternative fuels infrastructure.
The measure, which is (...)
State aid: Commission approves €2.5 million compensation to Slovenian Press Agency STA for its public service*
The European Commission has approved, under EU State aid rules, a €2.5 million compensation granted by Slovenia to the Slovenian Press Agency STA to fulfil its public service mission. (...)
The Impossibility of Proving the Absolute Impossibility to Recover Incompatible State Aid*
It is rather impossible for Member States to prove that it is absolutely impossible to recover State aid that has been found by the Commission, and confirmed by EU courts, to be (...)
State aid: Commission approves prolongation and modification of German scheme to support electricity production from renewable energy sources*
The European Commission has approved, under EU State aid rules, the prolongation and modification of a German scheme to support the production of (...)
Economic Continuity and Recovery of Indirect State Aid*
Recipients of State aid that is found to be incompatible with the internal market have to pay it back with interest. This liability for repayment also extend to anyone else who benefits from the aid indirectly. It is (...)
State aid: Commission approves restructuring aid for Polish Regional Railways, as Poland commits to an accelerated opening to competition of regional passenger rail transport*
The European Commission has concluded that Polish measures to support the restructuring of Polish Regional Railways, (...)
The European Commission has adopted revised Guidelines on Regional State Aid which will enter into force on 1 January 2022. The revised Guidelines bring about good and bad news for Irish granting authorities and prospective Regional Aid recipients. In particular, while permissible aid (...)
Draft New RDI Framework*
On Monday, 19 April 2021, the European Commission published the new Regional Aid Guidelines for the period 2022-2027. They can be accessed at:
On 8 April 2021, (...)
Background & facts of the case
A private company incorporated in Poland by a Polish archdiocese of the Catholic Church applied for an EU-funded subsidy intended for development of tourism. It indicated in the subsidy application that it was a small enterprise within the meaning of GBER (...)
Aid measures introduced by Sweden and Denmark for SAS for damage resulting from the cancellation or rescheduling of flights in the wake of travel restrictions caused by the Covid-19 pandemic comply with EU law*
Given that SAS’s market share is much higher than that of its closest competitor in (...)
State Aid Measures May not be Funded through Discriminatory Taxes*
Member States finance the generation of electricity from renewable energy sources [RES] with revenue they raise through levies or charges on consumers of electricity. On 14 April 2021, the General Court in (...)
On 14 April 2021, the General Court delivered two judgments (Achema and Lifosa, Case T-300/19, and Verband Deutscher Alten und Behindertenhilfe and CarePool Hannover, Case T-69/18, hereinafter “Achema” and “Verband Deutscher Alten”), which provide further guidance on the standard of judicial review (...)
Individual Aid Measures to Combat Covid-19*
Aid to remedy a serious economic disturbance may be granted to a single company that is important for the national economy. EU law does not extend to competitors a right to the same aid.
Between March 2020 and April 2021, the European (...)
On 14 April 2020, the General Court dismissed the actions for annulment brought by Ryanair against three decisions of the Commission authorising State aid in the airline sector. These judgments were delivered by the same Tenth Chamber (extended composition), which had already dismissed in (...)
On 14 April 2021, the General Court ("GC") handed down three judgments dismissing Ryanair’s challenges against decisions by the European Commission, approving individual aid measures granted by Finland to Finnair (Case T-388/20) and by Denmark and Sweden to SAS in the context of the COVID-19 (...)
The Federal Trade Commission and its Ability to Seek Restitution or Disgorgement Remedies*
The US Supreme Court in AMG Capital Management, LLC v. Federal Trade Commission ends, at least for now, the FTC’s habit of seeking monetary damages in court as part of requests for equitable relief.
The Supreme Court ruled unanimously in AMG Capital Management v. FTC that Federal Trade Commission Act ("FTCA") Section 13(b) does not authorize the FTC to obtain monetary remedies such as restitution or disgorgement. The Court’s decision is a significant setback for the FTC, particularly in (...)
In a unanimous 9-0 decision authored by Justice Breyer, the US Supreme Court has held that the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) lacks the authority to seek equitable monetary relief in cases brought in federal court under FTC Act Section 13(b). The Court’s April 22, 2021, decision in AMG Capital (...)
Last week, the U.S. Supreme Court decided unanimously in AMG Capital Management, LLC v. FTC that Section 13(b) of the Federal Trade Commission Act of 1914 (FTC Act) does not authorize the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) to seek monetary relief from defendants in federal court. We had anticipated (...)
This morning, the Supreme Court issued a unanimous ruling in AMG Capital Management, LLC v. FTC, finding that Section 13(b) of the FTC Act does not authorize the Commission to seek, or a court to award, equitable monetary relief such as restitution or disgorgement. 539 U.S. ___ (2021), Slip Op. (...)
The Supreme Court has ruled that the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) does not have authority under Section 13(b) of the FTC Act to seek disgorgement or restitution from defendants. The agency has increasingly relied on this authority to seek monetary penalties from defendants in antitrust cases, (...)
On April 22, 2021, the Supreme Court unanimously held that section 13(b) of the Federal Trade Commission Act - which authorizes “a permanent injunction”- does not authorize the Federal Trade Commission to seek, or a court to award, equitable monetary relief such as restitution or disgorgement. (...)
Earlier this year the Polish Competition Authority (“UOKiK”) published its guidelines on the rules of imposing and calculating fines for companies breaching competition law (the “New Guidelines”) replacing guidelines issued in 2015.
According to the New Guidelines, to determine the amount of the (...)
A new national security new regime
On 29 April 2021, the UK National Security and Investment Act ("Act") received Royal Assent. When brought into force, which is not expected until late 2021, the Act will significantly strengthen the UK Government’s powers to investigate and (...)
On 29 April 2021 the National Security and Investment (NSI) Bill received Royal Assent. The NSI Act 2021 introduces significant legislative reforms which will overhaul the ability of the UK Government to review transactions on national security grounds, and potentially prohibit their completion (...)
On 29 April 2021, the UK National Security and Investment Bill was granted Royal Assent and has therefore formally become law. The new National Security and Investment Act (NSIA), is not yet in force but it is expected to become effective later this year.
The NSIA establishes a new security (...)
The UK’s much publicised National Security and Investment Bill has now been granted Royal Assent – passing into law an Act which will significantly affect the way investments in the UK can be reviewed by the Government where they raise national security considerations. The Act introduces a (...)
The UK National Security and Investment Act 2021 (NSI Act) received royal assent on 29 April 2021. Expected to come into force in late 2021, the NSI Act will introduce a standalone UK foreign direct investment and national security screening regime, replacing the current regime that links (...)
On 29 April 2021, the principal legislation establishing the UK’s new national security regime – the National Security and Investment Act 2021 (the Act ) – received Royal Assent. Although the new regime is not expected to come into force until much later in 2021, the granting of Royal Assent is a (...)
On 29 April, the UK Parliament adopted the National Security & Investment Law (“NS&I Law”). The law received Royal Assent the following day and will come into legal effect in late 2021.
The NS&I Law will introduce mandatory notification and pre-clearance requirements for transactions (...)
The pharmaceutical industry, like the technology sector, has become as a focus of U.S. lawmakers seeking to revise competition law. In April 2021, House and Senate lawmakers introduced a package of legislation targeting conduct that supposedly prevents or slows competition from less expensive (...)
The 17th amendment to the German Foreign Trade and Payment Ordinance ("AWV") adopted by the federal government on April 27, 2021, included—compared to the original draft—a number of changes relevant to M&A transactions with a nexus to Germany.
A draft 17th amendment to the AWV was published (...)
Royal Decree-Law 7/2021, of 27 April, has implemented into Spanish law EU Directive 2019/1 of 11 December 2018 empowering the competition authorities of Member States (OJ L11/3, 14.1.2019) (ECN+ Directive).
The reform approved is less ambitious than anticipated by the preparatory works. No (...)
Regulators are becoming increasingly active in imposing measures on deals or prohibiting them altogether under FDI rules – with prohibitions happening in the EU’s largest economies Germany, France, and Italy in the past months. Against this backdrop, Germany is moving forward on its plans for (...)
Germany is continuing to tighten and develop its FDI regime: After various legislative actions in the course of 2020, the German Federal Government agreed on significant amendments of the existing FDI rules which will enter into force with its publication in the Federal Gazette (...)
EU to Propose New Artificial Intelligence Regulation*
On April 21, the EU Commission is expected to adopt a proposal for a regulation (the AI Regulation) of “artificial intelligence systems” (AI systems), imposing new obligations that will impact businesses across many, if not all, sectors of (...)
What’s next for drug pricing in the US?
Proposals to alter antitrust and patent laws may signal a renewed focus on drug pricing by federal lawmakers, while the growing web of state laws is expected to increase compliance challenges for the pharmaceutical industry.
A new (...)
Nordic Competition Authorities: Online pharmacies can increase competition in the pharmacy sector*
The Nordic Competition Authorities have 14.4.2021 published a joint memorandum on online pharmacy markets in the Nordics. The memorandum finds that the size and regulation of online pharmacy (...)
Restrictions in the beauty sector during COVID-19 cause competition inequality*
Having examined the application of the Latvian Association of Beauticians and Cosmetologists and the Latvian Association of Beauty Specialists, the Competition Council of Latvia (the CC) concludes that the (...)