The Competition and Markets Authority (“CMA”) has recently published its draft Annual Plan for 2015/2016, its second year of operation after assuming the functions of the Competition Commission and the competition functions of the Office of Fair Trading (“OFT”) on 1 April 2014. Together with a Strategic Assessment of the risks that consumers and markets…

In October 2014, the Commission published the result of its long-awaited food retail study. The study provides an extensive empirical analysis of the impact of bargaining power and private label on choice and innovation. However, the study suffers from a crucial shortcoming: none of the countries with high levels of retail concentration have been included…

Inductive reasoning is sometimes explained by using either the ‘duck test’ (“if it looks like a duck, swims like a duck and quacks like a duck, then it probably is a duck”) or the ‘elephant test’ (“it is difficult to describe, but you know it when you see it”). In EU competition law, it sometimes…

Two unusual features of the United Kingdom’s merger control regime are that notification is voluntary and there is no ‘suspension’ obligation. This means that mergers can be – and routinely are – completed without notification to and/or approval by the Competition and Markets Authority (“CMA”). In this article, I examine the CMA’s use of its…

Just over a year ago, I wrote (rather extensively) on the European Commission’s public consultation entitled “Towards more effective EU Merger Control” in which the Commission proposed to (i) expand its powers to review non-controlling minority interests and (ii) streamline the case referral system between the European Commission and NCAs (see here). Our regular readers…

On 10 June 2014, the Polish Parliament adopted a significant set of amendments to the Polish Competition Law Act (the “Act”). Having received Presidential approval on 30 June 2014, the amended Act is now waiting for publication. The changes are expected to come into force relatively soon. The amendments will take effect 6 months after…

Introduction With the exception of hard-core cartel conduct such as price-fixing and bid-rigging, Canadian competition law has de-emphasized in recent years the importance of pricing conduct as a source of anti-competitive harm. Thus, although the Canadian Competition Act historically contained a variety of criminal offences targeted at pricing conduct – price discrimination, predatory pricing, geographic…

I. INTRODUCTION Perhaps more than ever, tensions between suppliers and retailers have become the defining feature of the grocery industry worldwide. These tensions have also frequently formed the basis for interventions (or proposed interventions) by competition enforcement authorities in this sector. Canada is no exception to this global trend. The Canadian retail grocery industry is…

Last week, the Polish Lower Chamber of Parliament agreed final changes to Poland’s competition law regime. The new regime, which will be implemented by amendments to the Polish Act on Competition and Consumer Protection, is likely to come into force at the beginning of 2015. Whilst the amendments simplify and accelerate merger control proceedings, they…

It took five years to draft. But now everything’s go!-go!-go! First published late spring 2014, Ireland’s newest competition law reform could be adopted by July. And though planning was long and time for debate is now short, last minute changes (big ones too) continue. Just introduced amendments include new merger control thresholds. Other surprises include…