Interviews and Analysis

A crisis of competence amidst the coronavirus crisis

As economies around the world ground to a halt because of covid-19, the role of competition enforcers was cast under a new spotlight. Charley Connor explores if the crisis has undermined the distinction between competition law and consumer protection in two jurisdictions – South Africa and the UK – and how that might impact enforcement in a post-pandemic world.

20 October 2020

Two mandates, one goal

Combining competition and consumer protection powers has been a popular fit for some antitrust enforcers, but no two agencies have adopted exactly the same mould. Ben Remaly and Julie Masson look at the varying degrees of success that enforcers in the US, Germany, Italy, Poland and the UK have had in merging the two mandates and what might lie ahead.

20 October 2020

More than competition

Understanding that competition and consumer issues are intertwined and using that approach to take on the large digital platforms forms the core of Australian Competition and Consumer Commission chair Rod Sims’ message. He spoke to Charles McConnell about how his agency and staff are better equipped than some other agencies to tackle issues in the digital economy.

20 October 2020

Friends or acquaintances?

As issues around antitrust, consumer protection and privacy become increasingly blurred, two cases involving similar conduct against Facebook in Italy and Germany demonstrate the different routes authorities can take to tackle the power of digital platforms. Janith Aranze reflects on both cases and considers the advantages and disadvantages of relying on competition and consumer protection rules to police the digital economy.

20 October 2020

New Zealand’s competition bar

A handful of small but very capable local antitrust practices are now eagerly awaiting much discussed changes to New Zealand’s cartel laws and possible amendments to misuse of market power rules.

20 October 2020

Turkey’s competition bar

Turkey has a small but globally focused competition bar, where stand-alone firms compete with practices that benefit from big name partnerships to serve international clients.

20 October 2020

GCR Live: Interactive Asia-Pacific

GCR held its inaugural GCR Interactive Asia-Pacific event on 3 and 4 September, replacing our in-person GCR Live Annual Asia-Pacific Law Leaders Forum. A panel of experts discussed the intersection of competition, consumer protection and data laws, touching upon data portability and compulsory access regimes. Below is an abridged version of the speakers’ remarks

20 October 2020

Germany's Facebook ruling – A treasure trove of novel issues

On 23 June 2020, Germany’s Federal Court of Justice upheld the immediate enforcement of an order by the Federal Cartel Office against Facebook, prohibiting the company from collecting user data from other Facebook-owned services or third-parties and merging them with the users’ accounts on the social network without specific consent. Debevoise & Plimpton partner Thomas Schürrle and associate Andrea Pomana explore the court’s novel 55-page reasoning and its potential implications.

28 September 2020

Exclusive: An interview with John Penrose

The UK government announced on 14 September that John Penrose MP will lead a review of the country’s competition policy, as it prepares to leave the European Union and tackle the economic shock brought on by the coronavirus pandemic. Penrose spoke to Emily Craig about updating the UK’s “analogue era” competition rules, whether the report will recommend changes to the consumer welfare standard and how to address the challenges of the digital economy.

25 September 2020

Tackling market distortions from foreign subsidies

In June, the European Commission released a white paper seeking views on three proposed new tools to give it greater control over the acquisitions and activities of foreign-subsidised companies within the bloc. White & Case partners Genevra ForwoodJames KillickMarc Israel and Axel Schulz examine the potential impact of these powerful tools and how they can address competitive distortion.

07 August 2020

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