News

Linklaters hires Gide partner

Premium 01 July 1999

The head of Gide Loyrette Nouel’s Brussels office, Olivier D’Ormesson, is leaving the firm to join the Linklaters & Alliance competition team in Brussels.

New Clifford Chance partner named

Premium 01 July 1999

Awaiting full confirmation of the merger with Rogers & Wells, the Clifford Chance competition group continues to develop.

Transatlantic competition department for Clifford Chance Rogers & Wells

Premium 01 July 1999

A merger between Clifford Chance and New York-based Rogers & Wells is set to create a formidable transatlantic competition presence.

AT&T/ MediaOne

Premium 01 June 1999

US telecoms giant AT&T has launched an unsolicited US$54 billion bid for one of the world’s leading broadband communications companies, MediaOne.

Pearson Group's newspaper joint ventures

Premium 01 June 1999

In February the European Commission cleared the acquisition of joint control in Spanish pubisher Unidad Editorial SA by Recoletos Compain Editorial.

Supermarket enquiry

Premium 01 June 1999

The UK Competition Commission has launched a 12-month enquiry into claims of profiteering by the UK’s biggest supermarket groups.

Germany: New rules offer greater scope for conditional merger clearances

Premium 01 June 1999

Under the previous practice of the FCO, remedies were possible both prior to merger clearance and in the form of undertakings to be implemented post-clearance. The latter undertakings were usually in the form of a contract concluded between the merging parties and the FCO. However, the FCO was very reluctant to accept such undertakings, as enforcement can be difficult after a merger is fully implemented.

Taiwan: Amendments to Fair Trade Law

Premium 01 June 1999

The amendments to the Fair Trade Law, Taiwan’s ‘economic constitution’, have streamlined certain aspects of procedure and, in general, reinforced its applicability to all actions with a competition dimension

Netherlands: Competition Authority endorses PTT Post's charges for PO box services

Premium 01 June 1999

Complaints have been made to the Dutch Competition Authority that PTT Post abused its dominant position in the market for post office boxes by introducing charges for these services. The Authority pulled out all the stops in its investigation of the potential abuse, which included an analysis of PTT Post’s costs and profits, an analysis of the prices in other geographical areas and undertakings for PTT Post regarding the treatment of potential competing suppliers and the notification any future price increases to the Authority. The Dutch Competition Authority cooperated on the case with OPTA, the Independent Post & Telecommunications Authority, which has stated that the new pricing is not cross-subsidised. The Authority subsequently approved the new pricing by PTT Post.

United Kingdom: OFT publishes first Competition Act guidelines

Premium 01 June 1999

Having at last adopted an approach to competition law based on the EU regime, officials must feel thwarted by the European Commission’s recent White Paper proposals to reform its own competition policy. The government’s aim of minimising the work of the OFT by relying on European exemptions may come unstuck. The Act may not be too long in force before amendments are required. In the meantime, while the prohibitions are not yet in force, businesses should keep a wary eye open for developments.