Competition weekly news summary
8 November 2013


Conferences and Speeches

  • Antitrust damages in EU law and policy
    College of Europe GCLC annual conference
    7 November 2013
    "The Commission’s proposal […] will make sure that all victims can use the findings of competition authorities in the courtrooms and that the decisions taken by the NCAs are proof that the infringement actually took place. Also, all victims will be able to wait for the competition authorities to issue their decisions without worrying about time limits. Thirdly, it will be easier to access the required evidence."
    Read full speech >

Mergers

  • Commission opens in-depth investigation into Hutchison 3G UK's acquisition of Telefónica Ireland
    6 November 2013
    The Commission has opened an in-depth investigation to assess whether the planned acquisition of Telefónica Ireland by Hutchison 3G UK (H3G) is in line with the EU Merger Regulation. Both companies provide mobile telephony services in Ireland. The Commission has concerns that the transaction may reduce competition in the markets for retail mobile telephony and for wholesale access and call origination in Ireland.
    Read more >
  • Commission opens in-depth investigation into joint venture between INEOS and Solvay in PVC business
    5 November 2013
    The Commission has opened an in-depth investigation to assess whether the planned combination of the European chlorvinyls businesses of INEOS of Switzerland and Solvay of Belgium into a newly created joint venture was in line with the EU Merger Regulation. INEOS is active in the manufacture of petrochemicals, specialty chemicals and oil products. Solvay is active in the research, development, production, marketing and sale of chemicals and plastics. The Commission's preliminary investigation indicated competition concerns in the market of suspension polyvinyl chloride ("S-PVC") and sodium hypochlorite ("bleach"), where each of Solvay and Ineos is a key player.
    Read more >

State aid

  • Commission opens in-depth inquiry into €200 million restructuring aid for LOT Polish Airlines
    6 November 2013
    The Commission has opened an in-depth investigation to assess whether a PLN 804 million (around €200 million) restructuring aid for the ailing state-owned carrier LOT complies with EU state aid rules. The Commission will examine in particular whether the planned aid will enable LOT to become viable without continued public funding and whether the company offers adequate compensation to alleviate the distortion of competition caused by the state support. The Commission will also verify if LOT sufficiently contributes to the cost of restructuring.
    Read more >
  • Commission orders Germany to recover illegal state aid from German wood processor HoKaWe
    6 November 2013
    After an in-depth investigation, the Commission has concluded that a framework agreement for the delivery of wood between the German Land Brandenburg and HoKaWe Eberswalde GmbH ("HoKaWe") was not in line with EU state aid rules. In particular, the price adjustments under the agreement gave HoKaWe an undue economic advantage over its competitors. The company therefore needs to pay back € 2.4 million plus interest.
    Read more >
  • Commission opens in-depth investigation into fiscal exemptions for certain maritime chartering services in France
    6 November 2013
    The Commission has opened an in-depth investigation to examine whether changes to the French tax rules for maritime companies are in line with EU state aid rules. The Commission will in particular investigate the inclusion of time chartered vessels sailing under non-EU flags in the scope of a favorable fiscal regime based on the taxation of the fleet tonnage. The term “time chartering” refers to transport services which are provided with vessels and crew temporarily rented from other companies.
    Read more >
  • Commission consults on draft guidelines for supporting firms in difficulty
    5 November 2013
    The Commission is inviting comments on the conditions under which Member States can grant public funding to rescue and restructure firms in difficulty. The proposal aims to ensure that such support is targeted at the cases where it is needed most and that investors in failing firms carry their share of the costs of restructuring, rather than leaving the burden for taxpayers to bear.
    Read more >

Competition

  • Commission's competition services publish details on digital inspection methodology
    4 November 2013
    The Commission's competition services have published a demo on how they extract, encrypt and store electronic data during antitrust inspections. The objective is to acquaint legal practitioners and companies with the digital search methodology used during inspections of companies suspected of having infringed EU competition law.
    Go to demo >

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, 2013. Reproduction is authorised provided the source is acknowledged.

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