The EU Court of Justice rules on the standard of judicial review in merger cases and clarifies the burden of proof upon the Commission in conglomerate mergers cases (Tetra Laval / Sidel)

On 15 February 2005, the European Court of Justice (ECJ) dismissed the European Commission’s appeal in the Tetra Laval/Sidel merger case. [1] The ECJ’s judgment establishes two significant principles that apply beyond the facts of this particular case: • The judgment confirms that the Court of First Instance (CFI) for all practical purposes will continue to be the ultimate arbiter of disputes about the Commission’s use of evidence and economic assessment in merger control proceedings. The ECJ has signaled that it will generally not entertain appeals asserting that the CFI engaged in excessive scrutiny of the Commission’s assessment and therefore overstepped the permissible boundaries of judicial review. Had the ECJ upheld the arguments raised by the Commission, this may well have had a

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Claus-Dieter Ehlermann, John Ratliff, The EU Court of Justice rules on the standard of judicial review in merger cases and clarifies the burden of proof upon the Commission in conglomerate mergers cases (Tetra Laval / Sidel), 15 février 2005, e-Competitions February 2005, Art. N° 37199

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