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New head for NZ Commission

Premium - 01 June 1998

Peter Allport is the new head of the New Zealand Commerce Commission.

Wilmer Cutler boosts capability

Premium - 01 June 1998

Thomas Mueller, an antitrust partner previously resident in Wilmer, Cutler & Pickering’s Washington DC office, is joining the firm’s practice in Brussels.

Americans and Europeans revisit Boeing

Premium - 01 June 1998

At the ABA’s 46th annual spring meeting in Washington DC, the International Committee convened to discuss the jurisdictional and substantive law conflicts in the Boeing/McDonnell merger. The dust has now settled on the deal - which was finally cleared by the European Commission in July last year - allowing the chair, Mark Warner, to bring together a panel consisting of some of the leading participants in the deal to look at the implications of the case. While the agenda looked forward, some speakers took the chance to vent their frustration at what happened. Callum Campbell reports

France: Independent Broadcast Authority to get antitrust powers?

Premium - 01 June 1998

Under the new law, the CSA may well only be able to oppose a merger or acquisition on the grounds that such would adversely affect the plurality and freedom of information, but not in respect of general competition matters. The Communication blurs the distinction between plurality/freedom of information on the one hand and competition on the other. By failing to allocate competence clearly in relation to competition matters, this draft law succeeds merely in perpetuating the confusion in relation to division of competence between the CSA and Minister of the Economy.

BTR/ Owens-Illinois

Premium - 01 June 1998

The European Commission has cleared the acquisition of the UK’s BTR Packaging by Owens-Illinois Inc of the US after the companies agreed to shed all the glasscontainer business carried out by BTR Packaging, a unit of BTR plc, through its subsidiary, Rockware Group, at its four plants.

Denmark: Report on Competition Policy adopted

Premium - 01 June 1998

The Danish Competition Council has started publishing annual reports on competition policy, reporting essential decisions and discussing various Competition Law topics.

EU: Collective Dominance and the EC Merger Regulation

Premium - 01 June 1998

Despite the evidential difficulties involved, the ECJ’s acceptance that the concept of collective dominance applies in Merger Regulation cases is an important step in ensuring the preservation of competition in highlyconcentrated markets. It is clear from the judgment that the evidential burden on the Commission to prove that a collective dominant position exists is high and the ECJ will not be easily satisfied that a situation of collective dominance has been proved by the Commission to exist.

Belgium: Practical difficulties for Competition Authority

Premium - 01 June 1998

The number of merger decisions that have been published, and therefore that have formally been taken, has dramatically decreased over the years. To give some indication, there were 42 published decisions in 1994 and only 19 in 1997. According to reliable sources, 18 mergers were ‘informally’ cleared in 1996 and 37 in 1997.

Lockheed/ Northrop

Premium - 01 June 1998

A September court date has been set for the Department of Justice’s attempt to block the US$8.3 billion takeover of Northrop Grumman Corp by Lockheed Martin Corp - despite warnings from Northrop that the delay could kill the deal.

Microsoft: will Justice jump?

Premium - 01 June 1998

What will Joel Klein do next? That was the big question as GCR went to press, with Antitrust Department staffers and Microsoft lawyers, led by William H Neukom, huddled in Washington in what were termed 'settlement talks' aimed at averting a looming landmark action against the software giant.