Competition weekly news summary
Friday, April 1, 2011

Conferences and Speeches

  • EU priorities and competition enforcement
    Institute for European and International Affairs, Dublin, Alexander Italianer
    25 March 2011
    "We hear of budgetary constraints and cuts every day. (…) Competition Authorities are often expected to deliver top-class results quickly but with less staff and less means. This is why I wanted to recall at this first seminar the importance of Competition Authorities being adequately equipped for their tasks, whether in terms of effective enforcement mechanisms, efficient structures or adequate resources. Clearly, they must also be allowed to act in an impartial and independent manner. Such means for effective and sustained operation must be guaranteed, especially in times of budgetary constraints. Competition enforcement is always a sound investment and it outweighs its costs."
    Read full speech >

Mergers

  • Commission clears acquisition by Suntory and Castel of Covea Group's subsidiaries active in the French wine sector
    1 April 2011
    The transactions mainly impact the production and commercialisation of Bordeaux wines in France where Suntory, Castel, GMdF and MAAF Subsidiaries are all present. However, as the increment arising from this transaction is rather insignificant, the Commission concluded that the transaction would not raise competition concerns.
    Read more >
  • Commission clears acquisition of Norwegian company Elkem by China National Bluestar
    1 April 2011
    Considering the limited market share of the combined Elkem-Bluestar on the markets concerned and the presence of strong players serving the European consumers, such as FerroAtlántica of Spain, Dow Corning of the US and Wacker of Germany, the Commission concluded that the transaction does not raise competition concerns.
    Read more >
  • Commission clears acquisition of the solid rocket propulsion business of SNPE by French aeronautical company Safran
    31 March 2011
    The Commission's examination showed that the activities of the parties are largely complementary since they focus mostly on different types of products.
    Read more >
  • Commission clears acquisition of a stake in Italian engine manufacturer VM Motori by Fiat
    30 March 2011
    The Commission’s examination of the proposed transaction showed that the combination of VM Motori's diesel engine manufacturing activities with those of Fiat, which are carried out by Fiat Powertrain, would lead to relatively limited horizontal overlaps which would not raise competition concerns.
    Read more >

Antitrust

  • Commission confirms it is investigating Deutsche Bahn
    31 March 2011
    On 29 March, Commission officials started unannounced inspections at the premises of Deutsche Bahn AG and some of its subsidiaries. The Commission has, in particular, reason to believe that DB would give, via Deutsche Bahn Energie, the de facto sole supplier of electricity for traction trains in Germany, preferential treatment to the group's rail freight arm.
    Read more >

State aid

  • Commission approves Austrian State support for the restructuring of Kommunalkredit
    31 March 2011
    The Commission approved several measures in favour of Kommunalkredit Austria AG, including state guarantees of over €10 billion, a capital injection of €250 million and a split of the bank involving a €1 billion non-refundable loan to Kommunalkredit Finanz, the entity winding down the non-strategic assets. According to the restructuring plan, the bank that continues the strategic business will concentrate on public and project finance lending and withdraw from other activities. The Commission concluded that the restructuring plan is appropriate to restore the bank's viability, while adequately addressing competition distortions brought about by the state support.
    Read more >

Court

  • Case C-352/09 ThyssenKrupp Nirosta / Commission
    29 March 2011
    The Court of Justice rules on an appeal against a CFI judgment that had upheld a Commission decision of December 2006, imposing a fine on ThyssenKrupp Stainless regarding a cartel on alloy surcharges. The Court rejected the appeal, confirming, in particular, that the Commission was entitled to use the Antitrust Regulation 1/2003 as a legal base in relation to the procedural rules and the ECSC-Treaty in relation to the substantive rules.
    Read full judgment >
    Read full CFI judgment under appeal >
    Read more about initial Commission decision >
  • Joined cases C 201/09 and C 216/09 ArcelorMittal / Commission
    29 March 2011
    The Court of Justice ruled on appeals against a CFI judgment of 2009 that had upheld a Commission decision of November 2006 insofar as it imposed a fine on ArcelorMittal for participating in a cartel on steel beams. The CoJ rejected the appeals and confirmed the CFI ruling.
    Read full judgment >
    Read CFI judgment under appeal >
    Read more about initial Commission decision >

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Published by the Competition Directorate General of the European Commission. The content of this publication does not necessarily reflect the official position of the European Commission. Neither the Commission nor any person acting on its behalf is responsible for the use which might be made of the above information.

© European Union, 2011. Reproduction is authorised provided the source is acknowledged.

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