Competition weekly news summary
Friday, February 3, 2012

Conferences and Speeches

  • "European Union Competition policy – a building block for growth and renewal"
    European Competition Forum, Brussels, José Manuel Durão Barroso
    2 February 2012
    "The main message coming from the European Council was the need to deepen our Single Market. It is our greatest asset, the crown jewel of the European Union, our greatest asset in a competitive and globalised world, and it is our most promising engine for growth. [...] In fact, Europe's future growth prospects depend on a rules-based Single Market that fosters openness and innovation. Healthy and competitive markets stimulate entrepreneurship and encourage companies to be innovative – to create new products and services that meet demand. In turn, this helps to create jobs among successful players, triggers more competitive prices and gives consumers a wider choice of products and services."
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  • Priming Europe for Growth
    European Competition Forum, Brussels, Joaquín Almunia
    2 February 2012
    "The themes that we are debating today are linked by a basic principle; competition is one of the most powerful engines of growth in the EU. I don’t need to tell you how, in these dire times, the benefits of competition are extremely valuable – and not only for our companies. Many people in Europe are bearing the brunt of the crisis and of the fiscal consolidation strategies introduced to rein in public deficits. Together with this framework of fiscal discipline, the EU needs to modernise and strengthen its economy; and competition drives firms to look for a competitive edge and towards innovation. Therefore, if competition means growth, what we need today to reverse the decline in the standards of living of our citizens is more, well-regulated competition in the internal market. Releasing the creative and productive forces of our economy will bring lasting results."
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  • Commission blocks proposed merger between Deutsche Börse and NYSE Euronext
    Press conference, Brussels, Joaquín Almunia
    1 February 2012
    "Deutsche Börse and NYSE Euronext operate the two largest exchanges for European financial derivatives in the world: Eurex and Liffe. [...] We found ample evidence in our investigation that Eurex-DB and Liffe-NYSE Euronext compete head-to-head and are each other's closest competitors. These two companies constrain each other's prices and compete in product and technology innovation. Therefore, the merger would have eliminated a healthy process of competition. Given the essential role derivatives play in the European economy, we could not allow this to happen."
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Mergers

  • Commission blocks proposed merger between Deutsche Börse and NYSE Euronext
    1 February 2012
    The Commission has prohibited the proposed merger between Deutsche Börse and NYSE Euronext, as it would have resulted in a quasi-monopoly in the area of European financial derivatives traded globally on exchanges. Together, the two exchanges control more than 90% of global trade in these products. The Commission's investigation showed that new competitors would be unlikely to enter the market successfully enough to pose a credible competitive threat to the merged company. The companies offered, in particular, to sell certain assets and to provide access to their clearinghouse for some categories of new contracts, but overall, the commitments were inadequate to solve the identified competition concerns.
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Competition

  • Commission hosts first European Competition Forum
    2 February 2012
    The first European Competition Forum was held in Brussels, hosted by the European Commission. 450 high-level participants attended, including representatives from national ministries and local government, European institutions, national competition authorities, business and consumer organisations, think tanks and international organizations.
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Antitrust

  • Commission opens proceedings against Samsung
    31 January 2012
    The Commission has opened a formal investigation to assess whether Samsung Electronics has abusively, and in contravention of a commitment it gave to the European Telecommunications Standards Institute (ETSI), used certain of its standard essential patent rights to distort competition in European mobile device markets, in breach of EU antitrust rules.
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Court

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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, 2012. Reproduction is authorised provided the source is acknowledged.

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