June / July 1999

France: Merger control cases under the aegis of the Conseil d’Etat

01 June 1999

In its decision, the Conseil d’Etat implicitly accorded Interbrew the status of an ‘interested party’ despite the fact that under the EC merger regime it would only have been a ‘third party’ entitled to a hearing. The decision will no doubt result in most conditional ministerial merger decisions (and negative decisions, although the Orangina/Coca-Cola case should remain exceptional) being challenged by competitors before the Conseil d’Etat on the basis of their right of defence.