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Office of Competition and Consumer Protection

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Merger control

Excessive consolidation of companies may have negative effect on competition. Therefore, the Office’s main responsibility in this respect is to control transactions between enterprises, e.g. mergers, takeover of control, acquisition of an organized part of assets or establishment of a joint business entity. The control of the antitrust authority covers only transactions which influence or may influence the Polish market.

Pursuant to the Act of 16 February 2007 on competition and consumer protection, the participants of the planned transaction are obligated to obtain prior clearance of the President of the Office of Competition and Consumer Protection when their turnover in the year preceding the application exceeded EUR 1 billion in the world or EUR 50 million in Poland.

The law provides for situations in which the obligation to notify is excluded due to potentially insignificant impact of the planned transaction on the market. This relates to cases where the turnover of the target enterprise did not exceed the equivalent of EUR 10 million in Poland in any of the two financial years preceding the notification or if the merger involves entities belonging to one capital group.

The Office clears transactions which do not lead to a significant restriction of competition. Otherwise, it forbids the consolidation. It is also possible that a merger or acquisition is cleared subject to certain terms and conditions, for example resale of a part of assets. Moreover, the Act exceptionally allows to clear a transaction leading to a significant lessening of competition if it simultaneously contributes to economic development or technical progress or has a favorable impact on the economy.

The President of the Office may impose a fine of up to 10 % of previous year’s revenue, if an enterprise, even unintentionally, carries out a merger or acquisition without obtaining the President’s prior consent. Furthermore, if this merger proved to have been anticompetitive structural sanctions may be applied.

Attached files

Guidelines on the criteria and procedure of notifying the intention of concentration to the President of UOKiK

Clarifications concerning the assessment by the president of UOKiK of the notified concentrations