The government has responded with draft guidance to the consultation on proposals to change the jurisdictional thresholds for UK merger control in the national security risk sectors and extended the powers to intervene in circumstances where a merger might raise national security concerns.

The turnover threshold for M&A activity in the following national security risk sectors will be reduced from £70 million to £1 million:

  • the development or production of items for military or dual military/civilian use
  • quantum technology
  • computing hardware

A new share of supply test will also be introduced enabling the government to act where those carrying on the relevant enterprises had an existing share of supply of at least 25% of the relevant goods and services in the UK before the merger. This test will be in addition to the current share of supply test which allows the government to intervene where a merger leads to an increase in the share of supply to, or above, the 25% threshold.

The CMA is currently seeking views on its draft guidance and this consultation will run until 12 April 2018.