Competition & Antitrust, Czech Republic updates

Competition Office Issues Draft Guidelines on Turnover Calculation
  • Czech Republic
  • 24 April 2008

The Office for the Protection of Competition has invited the general public to provide comments on its draft guidelines regarding the calculation of turnover for the purposes of merger control notification. The aim is to help merging undertakings to determine whether a transaction requires clearance from the Office for the Protection of Competition.

Competition Office to Assist in Merger Control
  • Czech Republic
  • 21 February 2008

The Czech Office for Protection of Competition has decided to assist officially merging undertakings in their merger notification. The aim of the newly established process is to facilitate and accelerate merger control proceedings. However, the pre-notification process works on a purely voluntary basis and is not a condition precedent to granting a clearance.

Competition Office Decision in Breach of Ne Bis In Idem Principle
  • Czech Republic
  • 17 January 2008

The Competition Office recently found a company active in natural gas import and trade liable for abuse of its dominant position, and thus in breach of both national and EU competition legislation. The Competition Office imposed a fine of Kr240 million. However, in judicial review proceedings the court abolished the Competition Office’s decision.

New Leniency Programme Is Launched
  • Czech Republic
  • 09 August 2007

In June 2007 the Competition Authority issued a new leniency programme. The programme was inspired by the model programme set out by the European Competition Network, as well as the new leniency programme of the European Commission. The new programme introduces various changes, including more detailed conditions for its application.

Competition Act Amended to Conform with EU Law
  • Czech Republic
  • 19 April 2007

The European Commission has issued a reasoned opinion formally requesting that the Czech Republic amend a provision of the Czech Competition Act that limits the Competition Authority's power to apply Articles 81 and 82 of the EC Treaty to anti-competitive behaviour in the electronic communications sector.

Ministry Receives Highest Ever Fine
  • Czech Republic
  • 09 November 2006

The Ministry of Work and Social Affairs has received a fine of Kr500,000 from the Office for the Protection of Economic Competition for breaching provisions of the public procurement legislation in failing to open a tender for the delivery of services.

Competition Office Stays Proceedings Against Telefónica O2
  • Czech Republic
  • 10 August 2006

The Competition Office has stayed the proceedings it initiated against Telefónica O2 Czech Republic for the abuse of its dominant position and breach of both national and European competition legislation. The office stayed the proceedings following acceptance of a number of commitments offered by Telefónica.

Domestic Competition Legislation is Overhauled
  • Czech Republic
  • 21 October 2004

Parliament has passed a new amendment to the Competition Act in reaction to the new EU antitrust enforcement legislation introduced by EU Regulation 1/2003 on the implementation of the competition rules laid down in Articles 81 and 82 of the EC Treaty. Among other things, the amendment introduces a new concept of exempted cartel agreements.

Implications of EU Accession for Domestic Law
  • Czech Republic
  • 24 April 2003

When conducting proceedings and giving decisions on competition matters, the Czech Office for the Protection of Economic Competition is obliged to abide by and comply with its Association Agreement with the European Union and its member states, and the relevant provisions of the EC Treaty.

Court Has Final Say in Anti-monopoly Office Rulings
  • Czech Republic
  • 19 December 2002

Decisions of the Czech Office for the Protection of Economic Competition regarding cartel agreements may be appealed before the chairperson of the office, as may any fines imposed. From January 1 2003 the chairperson's decision may be reviewed before the administrative court pursuant to the Act on Judicial Administrative Proceedings.

Anti-monopoly Office Imposes Highest Penalty Yet
  • Czech Republic
  • 22 August 2002

Two out of three of the Czech Republic's mobile telephony operators have been fined by the Office for the Protection of Economic Competition for misuse of their dominant position in the market. The competent court is now reviewing the office’s ruling to decide whether the high penalties were justified.

Offices Dictates the Nature of Control
  • Czech Republic
  • 20 June 2002

Ultimately, the question of whether an entity acquires control of a company as a result of a transaction rests on the circumstances of each individual case. The Czech Office for the Protection of Economic Competition interprets 'control' as the controlling entity's potential ability to influence the conduct, business decisions and activities of the controlled company. Thus, the decisive factor is that a company's activities may be influenced as a result of acquisition.

Merger Notification is Not Always Necessary
  • Czech Republic
  • 11 April 2002

A merger or concentration need not be notified in the Czech Republic, and nor must approval be sought therein, if it takes place abroad and the common share of the parties involved does not exceed 10% of a relevant market in the Czech Republic.

Leniency Programme Encourages Cartel Whistle-Blowing
  • Czech Republic
  • 31 January 2002

The Office for the Protection of Economic Competition has introduced a leniency programme in order to discourage prohibited cartel behaviour. The programme targets entities that no longer wish to be a party to a prohibited agreement but are afraid of receiving a large fine as punishment for their activities under it.

New Legislation Simplifies Concentration Approvals
  • Czech Republic
  • 25 October 2001

The new Act on the Protection of Economic Competition further harmonizes Czech anti-monopoly legislation with that of the European Community, particularly in respect of concentrations of companies.

Overview (October 2000)
  • Czech Republic
  • 12 October 2000

Including: First Block Exemption Granted; Exceptions

Antitrust Office Approves Chemical Industry Merger
  • Czech Republic
  • 03 August 2000

The Czech Office for the Protection of Economic Competition has approved BorsodChem Rt's acquisition of a stake in a Czech company. BorsodChem Rt is one of Europe's largest chemical manufacturers. The economic advantages that would result from the transaction were an important factor in the decision.

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