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Coronavirus round-up: CMA clarifies approach to cooperation

Competition authorities worldwide continue to mobilise in the face of the novel coronavirus pandemic, with enforcers in the UK and Poland establishing dedicated taskforces to tackle harmful conduct.

UK tribunal suggests expediting and referring trucks appeal

The UK’s Competition Appeal Tribunal has allowed defendant truck manufacturers to appeal against its ruling on the binding nature of the European Commission’s trucks cartel decision.

New Zealand raises concerns with Upjohn/Mylan tie-up

The proposed merger of Pfizer’s off-patent branded and generic established medicines business with Mylan raises competition concerns over the supply of several molecules, New Zealand’s competition watchdog has said.

  • A textbook cartel case: The Asia-Pacific Tipline for 27 March 2020

    Australia’s competition watchdog has authorised competitors to collaborate in four key industries as the country tries to battle back against the covid-19 pandemic, which has disrupted global and local supply chains, halted most travel and left consumers and businesses scrambling. The ACCC has a well-oiled authorisations machine, and its staff have experience assessing requests to authorise certain conduct – albeit likely not on such short timetables – but other countries have issued broad policy statements in response to the crisis. Competition authorities in Asia-Pacific are trying to maintain some semblance of normalcy, as a new cartel case was brought in Hong Kong and Japan released its findings from a market inquiry.

  • Lithuania closes 23-month home decorator investigation

    Lithuania’s Competition Council has closed a 23-month investigation into DIY companies over suspected anticompetitive agreements.

  • Dutch court refers air cargo follow-on claim to ECJ

    A Dutch court has asked the European Court of Justice to clarify whether claimants can seek compensation for alleged anticompetitive conduct that took place before new EU competition rules came into effect in 2004.

DOJ requires divestitures in UTC/Raytheon

The Department of Justice’s antitrust division has required divestitures in three markets to resolve its concerns about defence contracting giant United Technologies Corporation’s purchase of rival Raytheon.

Two trillion dollars: The Tipline for 27 March 2020

In spy parody movie Austin Powers, Dr Evil originally proposes to hold the world ransom for one million dollars. When his henchmen say that isn’t enough, he ups the ransom to $100 billion. The US Senate’s covid-19 recovery package goes far beyond either of Dr Evil’s numbers, providing a total of $2.2 trillion in financial relief in response to the coronavirus crisis. The package significantly outstrips annual defence spending, a major US government outlay. The DOJ settled concerns over a major deal in that sector yesterday, with antitrust chief Makan Delrahim saying divestitures in three markets would protect taxpayers from any competitive harms that would result from the merger of United Technologies Corporation and Raytheon.

France’s competition bar

The Paris bar has experienced a reshuffle over the past few years, with some high-profile moves and retirements. Matt Richards walks through the changes.

CMA chairman: digitisation requires “major adjustments” to competition policy

The chairman of the UK's Competition and Markets Authority has urged enforcers to make greater use of “soft power” tools such as international cooperation to better respond to the challenges of digitisation.

“Excellent” Coscelli granted second term at CMA

Andrea Coscelli has been reappointed as head of the UK’s Competition and Markets Authority, in a move that one lawyer has termed an “easy call”.

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