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EC merger control regulation approved after long delay.


After 16 years of debate, a European Community regulation on the control of concentrations between companies has been approved by the EC Commission, effective September 21, 1990. A concentration can be either a merger between two or more companies or an aquisition, with one company assuming control of another. Joint ventures are not considered concentrations if the controlling companies remain independent of each other.

EC companies are obliged to notify the EC Commission before a concentration takes place, after which the closing will be postponed automatically for at least three weeks. The commission has one month to initiate proceedings to halt the concentration and four months to hand down a final decision. Throughout the process, the parties are free to propose changes in terms to make the concentration more palatable to the Commission.

The principal criterion for deciding if a concentration should be allowed to proceed is whether it will impede competition in the EC. If it will not, it will be authorized. [Graph Omitted]
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Publication:Journal of Accountancy
Date:May 1, 1990
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