Tuesday, October 25, 2011
When do Mergers Raise Concerns? An Analysis of the Assessment Carried out by the European Commission under the New Merger Regulation
Posted by D. Daniel Sokol
Nadia Calvino (Deputy Director General in the Directorate General Internal Market) asks When do Mergers Raise Concerns? An Analysis of the Assessment Carried out by the European Commission under the New Merger Regulation.
ABSTRACT: During the period under review, all prohibitions, most remedies and the majority of interventions have been based on a finding of horizontal—mainly coordinated but also non coordinated—effects. The Commission has provided in-depth assessment of vertical mergers ranging from markets where vertical integration is a structural feature to others where the changing nature of operations makes predictions more difficult. In a number of cases, the Commission has assessed efficiency gains alleged by parties—not as a separate element to be offset against potential anticompetitive effects but as part of an integrated analysis of the potential impact of the merger. The guidelines drafted by the Commission have provided a reliable framework and have been complemented with increasingly sophisticated techniques allowing for a more economic approach to take shape in a way that appears accepted by the European courts.