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美国联邦贸易委员会撤回纵向合并指南
发表时间:2021-09-17 阅读次数:72次

美国联邦贸易委员会(FTC)投票决定撤销对与美国司法部 (DOJ) 联合发布的纵向合并指南和 FTC 纵向合并审批评论。这些指导文件于 2020 年发布,其中包括不受法律或市场现实支持的不健全的经济理论。FTC 正在撤回,以防止行业或司法依赖有缺陷的方法。在投票撤回时,FTC 重申了其与 DOJ 密切合作的承诺,以审查和更新各机构的合并指南。

撤回的纵向合并指南规定了非横向合并的分析技术和执行政策,而相关的评论则总结了大量利用该框架的先前调查。该指南指出了垂直合并可能损害竞争的几种方式,FTC 多数人的声明提供了有价值的分析。

然而,美国联邦贸易委员会多数派的声明指出,2020 年纵向合并指南不正当地违反了克莱顿法案,尽管在法律或市场现实中没有任何支持基础,但该指导方针采用了一种特别有缺陷的经济理论,即所谓的兼并有利于竞争的好处。大多数人指出,由于《纵向合并指南》于 2020 年通过,因此尚未产生重大影响,迅速采取行动对于防止司法依赖这一有缺陷的讨论至关重要。

未来,FTC 将与 DOJ 合作更新合并指南,以更好地反映市场现实。FTC 多数声明列出了该审查中需要考虑的几个领域。首先,FTC打算探索方法,为可能非法的交易的特征提供明确的指导。其次,FTC 将根据对过去补救措施的评估以及过去补救措施可能没有完全恢复竞争的证据,寻找方法,为无效补救措施提供指导。最后,该机构将寻求扩大 2020 年纵向并购指南中确定的危害,以考虑现代公司的各种特征,包括数字市场,以及并购对劳动力市场的影响。

以下为美国联邦贸易委员会的报道原文:

 

FederalTrade Commission Withdraws Vertical Merger Guidelines and Commentary

The FederalTrade Commission voted to withdraw its approval of the Vertical MergerGuidelines, issued jointly with the Department of Justice (DOJ), and the FTC’sVertical Merger Commentary. The guidance documents, which were published in2020, include unsound economic theories that are unsupported by the law ormarket realities. The FTC is withdrawing its approval in order to preventindustry or judicial reliance on a flawed approach. In voting to withdraw, theFTC reaffirmed its commitment to working closely with the DOJ to review andupdate the agencies’ merger guidance.

 

Thewithdrawn Vertical Merger Guidelines set out analytical techniques andenforcement policies for non-horizontal mergers, while the associatedcommentary had summarized a selection of prior investigations that largelyutilized that framework. The guidelines noted several ways vertical mergers canharm competition, which the statement by the FTC majority recognizes providedvaluable analysis.

 

Thestatement by the FTC majority, however, notes that the 2020 Vertical MergerGuidelines had improperly contravened the Clayton Act’s language with itsapproach to efficiencies, which are not recognized by the statute as a defenseto an unlawful merger. The majority statement explains that the guidelinesadopted a particularly flawed economic theory regarding purported pro-competitivebenefits of mergers, despite having no basis of support in the law or marketreality. The majority noted that because the Vertical Merger Guidelines wereadopted in 2020, they had yet to have a significant impact and that actingswiftly was paramount to preventing judicial reliance on this flaweddiscussion.

 

Goingforward, the FTC will work with the DOJ to update merger guidance tobetter-reflect market realities. The FTC majority statement lays out severalareas for consideration in that review. First, the FTC intends to explore ways to provide clear guidance on thecharacteristics of transactions that are likely unlawful. Second, the FTC willlook at ways to provide guidance on ineffective remedies, based on anevaluation of past remedy practices and any evidence that past remedies may nothave fully restored competition. Finally, the agency will look to expand on theharms identified in the 2020 Vertical Merger Guidelines to consider variousfeatures of modern firms, including in digital markets, and impacts of mergerson labor markets.

 

(译文来源:微信公众号“竞争法前沿”)

 

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