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Canada: Bureau releases draft of Cooperating Parties Program

Premium - 01 June 1999

The Competition Bureau has released draft guidelines on its Cooperating Parties Program as well as guidelines on software labelling. The Bureau has also continued its string of recent successes in criminal enforcement, obtaining a record fine against deceptive telemarketers.

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.

Czech Republic: Government seeks to enhance telecoms competition with third mobile phone operator

Premium - 01 June 1999

The Czech government wishes to increase competition in the telecommunications sector and will hold a tender to select a third mobile telephone operator in the Czech Republic.

USA: Fine for partner who wrongly certified HSR filing

Premium - 01 June 1999

The action against Blackstone and its partner highlights the important responsibility that an individual assumes when certifying the completeness of an HSR filing. The individual must be satisfied that an adequate search has been undertaken for all potential 4(c) documents. In addition, the Director of the FTC’s Bureau of Competition, William Baer, was at pains recently to make it clear that the FTC can be expected to take action even if there has not been reckless disregard or intentional omission of 4(c) documents. Baer also noted that he received a lot of ’thank you’ calls from corporate counsel following the announcement of the Blackstone settlement, because they had been having trouble getting their clients to take their 4(c) obligations seriously.

Panama: Parties preparing pleadings in first competition case

Premium - 01 June 1999

Since it came into force in November 1996, much has been written in Panama about Law 29 on Free Competition, but so far no company has been penalised for anticompetitive practices. This may change in the near future as the Comisión de Libre Competencia y Asuntos del Consumidor prepares to fight the first competition case ever brought to court in Panamanian history.

New era for EU telecoms

Premium - 01 June 1999

Following last year’s problems with the weather further south, the venue of the 10th annual joint conference of the IBA’s Communications Law and Antitrust and Trade Law Committees moved up to Dublin, which delegates reached unhindered for two days of high-quality talk. Sebastian O’Meara was in attendance

Inquiry into UK new car market

Premium - 01 June 1999

The Competition Commission has launched an inquiry into the £24 billion-a-year new car market in the UK.

EU welcomes Coca-Cola’s climbdown on Cadbury- Schweppes

Premium - 01 June 1999

EU Competition Commissioner Karel van Miert has said welcomes the decision by Coca-Cola Co to abandon its plans to buy the international drinks business of Cadbury Schweppes PLC.

Venezuela: US soda ash producer guilty of abusing dominance

Premium - 01 June 1999

With this decision, the Antitrust Agency has introduced gretaer competition to the Venezuelan soda ash dense market.

Rhone-Poulenc/ Hoechst

Premium - 01 June 1999

A merger between French pharmaceuticals firm Rhône-Poulenc and Hoechst of Germany will create the largest pharmaceuticals and agrochemical company in the world, with annual sales estimated at US$20 billion.