Summary: Following the UK vote to leave the EU, Edward Coulson (partner and head of competition litigation practice) and Julia Joseph (senior associate) were interviewed by LexisPSL on the impact on public and private enforcement of competition law in the UK.
Jurisdiction and competition enforcement in the UK
If the UK remains part of the EEA, the UK's Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) would share responsibility for competition law enforcement with the EFTA Surveillance Authority, rather than the European Commission. In the event that the UK leaves the EEA entirely (full Brexit), the CMA is likely to see a significant increase in its caseload. From a merger control perspective, companies active in both the UK and the EU would lose the benefit of the Commission's 'one-stop shop' regime. Accordingly, if a merger satisfies both UK and EU thresholds, it may require notification to both the CMA and the Commission. Not only does this expose companies to greater legal uncertainty in the event of conflicting approaches and decisions, it also substantially increases the costs and administrative burdens associated with such transactions.
This article was first published in LNB News, a Lexis Nexis publication, on the 26 July 2016. © Copyright LexisNexis 2016.