A special programme for promoting healthy competition in Finland was launched in the early 2012. One key objective of the programme is to tackle the challenges in enhancing effective competition in the Finnish grocery retail sector, identified e.g. in the so-called Europe 2020 Strategy approved by the European Council in July 2012. Resulting from the programme, a new section (7 a) pertaining to the abuse of dominant position is now proposed to be added to the Finnish Competition Act (948/2011). According to the proposed section, an actor in the retail trade would automatically be considered dominant in the consumer goods trade market if its national market share exceeded 30 per c [...]
Many new economic analysis tools have been introduced, particularly for merger analysis during the last decade. Some of these tools have also raised considerable public interest. For instance, probably not many have avoided hearing of the UPP test, and undoubtedly many are already familiar with the meaning of the abbreviations GUPPI, IPR and CMCR. The discussion has been manifold. It has often revolved around different theoretical issues, but to some extent it has also drawn on the experiences gained from merger assessment praxis.
One central theme in this discussion is related to the role of market definition in the application of the new economic tools. Indeed, many new economic tools hav [...]
Economics has an increasingly important role in merger assessment. Hardly anyone can imagine trying to build a solid major merger case anymore without paying at least some attention to the indirect evidence gained from analyzing the set of indicative economic factors of the case at hand. Whilst there are differences e.g. between different NCA’s and the European Commission and as to whether one also talks about a major or minor case, the rationale for intervention (if and how the proposed merger would likely harm consumers) still seems increasingly lean on the economic analysis of (economic) theories of harm. With increased knowledge of economics and use of economic evidence in the decision-m [...]
Public discussion on merger control in the last few years of has put the spotlight on two elements of contemporary merger analysis: market definition and market concentration, of which the former has raised considerable debate, in particular. It has been asked if market definition has de facto become superfluous to merger analysis due to some modern developments in merger assessment techniques, and if not, has its role still changed? Along with this debate, a more intense discussion on the role of market concentration in merger analysis has been revived. By somewhat generalizing, overall the discussion has made us face the question: are the days of traditional structural assumption really ov [...]
The fairness of EU competition policy has been frequently challenged in the 2000s. It has been argued that the European Commission discriminates against small market companies in its merger assessment. Discussion on the reasons of the alleged discrimination has frequently revolved around the Commission’s method of market delineation in its merger assessment, which would result in a so-called “false positive” or “type I error”. This would imply an incorrect finding of dominant position / the SIEC considerably more often and more easily in mergers between two small market companies, relative to the same sized rivals based on large national markets. Almost as often it has been argued [...]