On 13 December 2007, the European Commission (Commission) confirmed that some of its officials and those from the Office of Fair Trading had carried out unannounced inspections at the business premises of two S PVC producers in the UK. The surprise visit was sparked by information that the companies may have breached provisions in the EU Merger Regulation that prevent companies from completing a merger governed by that Regulation until it has been notified and cleared by the Commission. In its press release, the Commission also drew attention to the fact that information exchanged between undertakings before a clearance decision may breach the provision under Article 81(1), which prohibits the exchange of business sensitive information. However, the inspection visit only marks the commencement of the Commission's investigation and it remains to be seen whether the evidence obtained actually confirms these allegations.