What is the standard of proof for non-coordinated effects in horizontal mergers?

Taking stock in 2020

Article 2 of the EU Merger Regulation stipulates that a merger that significantly impedes effective competition shall be blocked. National merger rules, e.g. Konkurrencelovens §12 c stk 2, replicate this standard. The EU Commission and national competition authorities employ a range of economic tools to determine whether a merger has negative effects on competition, but what exactly is the threshold to prove a significant impediment to competition? We discuss this question in relation to two recent cases, the Danish Tryg/Alka (2018), and EU’ Hutchison 3G UK/Telefónica UK (2016). In the latter, the General Court (2020) dealt a crushing blow the Commission’s economic assessment of the O2/Three merger decision that might have significant reverberations for the mobile telephony markets in the EU.

The lecture will be in English and will have two presentations.

  • Maria José Schmidt-Kessen is Assistant Professor in EU Commercial Law at Copenhagen Business School. She teaches competition law, regulation of markets, and international economic law. She holds a PhD (May 2018) from the European University Institute in Florence in competition and intellectual property law.

  • Torben Thorø Pedersen is a managing economist at Copenhagen Economics where he helps clients primarily within the fields of competition economics and electricity markets. He has extensive experience with competition economics, having worked on a broad range of competition cases, especially mergers and abuse of dominance cases. Since 2015, Torben has been an assessor at the Danish Maritime and Commercial High Court, appointed by Dansk Industri. He has also appeared as an expert witness in arbitration cases. Prior to joining Copenhagen Economics, Torben worked for the Danish Competition Authority and for DONG Energy Bioenergy & Thermal Power.


A link to join the lecture will be provided when you register. Deadline for registration is 7 July 2020, 12:00 .