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Brussels 30th June – EU Commission Accepts Insurance Ireland Commitments on Data Access.

The EU Commission has accepted commitments offered by Insurance Ireland granting ensure fair and non-discriminatory access to its Insurance Link information exchange system, which contains important data for companies offering motor vehicle insurance services in Ireland. In a Statement of Objections issued in June, the Commission outlined its preliminary view that Insurance Ireland arbitrarily delayed or in practice denied access of non-members to its Insurance Link information exchange system, thereby restricting competition in the Irish motor vehicle insurance market. The commitments are legally binding.

Dublin 29th June – President Signs Competition (Amendment) Act 2022 Into Law.

President Michael D. Higgins signed the Competition (Amendment) Act, 2022, into law. The Act provides for administrative fines for breaches of competition law.

Dublin 16th June – CCPC Clears Payments JV Subject to Conditions.

The Competition and Consumer Protection Commission (CCPC) has cleared, a proposed joint venture between AIB, Bank of Ireland, Permanent TSB and KBC to provide a new mobile payments service, subject to a number of legally binding commitments. The mobile payments service will be available to customers of banks and other participating financial institutions. The JV will facilitate: (i) instant person-to-person payments; and, (ii) instant person-to-business payments services which can be used by online merchants on their websites, or in retail outlets through the use of QR codes, to allow consumers to pay for goods and services, using a smartphone app.

London 14th June – CAT Upholds CMA Meta/Giphy Merger Decision.

The Competition Appeal Tribunal (CAT) handed down its judgement in relation to Meta’s appeal against a Competition and Market Authority (CMA) ruling that Meta’s acquisiton of Giphy was anti-competitive. The CMA had found that Meta’s purchase of Giphy would reduce competition between social media platforms and had already removed Giphy as a potential challenger in the display advertising market in the UK. The CMA decision required Meta to sell Giphy to a purchaser approved by the CMA. The CAT rejected five of Meta’s six grounds of appeal. The CAT stated that it had “no hesitation” in concluding that the CMA’s finding that the merger between Meta and Giphy substantially reduced dynamic competition was lawful.

Dublin 7th June – CCPC Clears Supermarket Merger Subject to Conditions.

The Competition and Consumer Protection Commission (CCPC) announced that it had cleared Tesco’s acquisition of Joyce’s Supermarkets. Joyce’s operate a number of supermarkets in the Galway area following a Phase 2 investigation. The clearance is subject to a number of conditions including a commitment by Tesco to sell one of the Joyce Supermarkets located at Oranmore as a going concern to a suitable purchaser. The CCPC had concerns about the number of competing supermarkets that would be available in the Oranmore area following the transaction.

Dublin 2nd June – CCPC Claims It Saved Consumers €66m in 4 years.

The Competition and Consumer Protection (CCPC) has published a report that estimates the potential value to consumers of the its competition enforcement and merger control work. The report which was prepared by the CCPC claims that over the four year period 2017-2021, the financial benefit to consumers from the CCPC’s competition enforcement and merger control work was €65.82 million. It argues that this does not include “the – likely much larger – benefits from deterring breaches of competition law and of deterring companies from proposing anti-competitive mergers.” The Report can be downloaded from the CCPC website.

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