09.08.10 01:52 Age: 9 yrs
EU Opens Broader Antitrust Investigation of Greek Airlines’ Merger
On July 30th 2010, the European Commission (“EC”) said that it would deepen its investigation of the proposed merger of Olympic Air and Aegean Airlines, both of which are Greek airlines. The merger is said to be able to “raise serious competition concerns”.
Officials of EC said that the business to be merged has “very high, if not monopolistic market shares on all domestic routes, and on a number of international routes where both parties operate.” They were also worried about the impact on ground handling services at a number of Greek airports. The deadline of the investigation, according to relevant EU Regulations, is December 7th.
The merger of Aegean and Olympic was dealt in February in reaction to Greece’s financial crisis. But the merged carrier would have to give up some domestic routes to satisfy EU Competition Regulations. They have estimated that the merged carriers would control more than 95% of the domestic market.
John Lee, Senior Attorney of Lehman, Lee & Xu, remarked, “This is a fundamental merger for Greece and EU, which occupies a big market share, in combination with Greece’s sensitive economic situation. So I think the EC will deal with the case cautiously.”
Lehman, Lee & Xu is a prominent Chinese corporate law firm and trademark and patent agency with offices in Beijing, Shanghai, Shenzhen, Hong Kong, Macau, and Mongolia. The firm has also been recognized as one of the top full service as well as intellectual property firms in China by several international magazines. The law firm is managed by Mr. Edward Lehman, a leading expert on corporate law with 20 years of practice experience in Mainland China.
To learn more about us, please visit our website at www.lehmanlaw.com.