The Commission’s blocking in 2001 of the merger between Tetra
Laval (packaging, Switzerland/Sweden) and Sidel (plastic bottles,
France) has been definitively overruled by the European Court of
The ECJ on 15 February definitively overruled the decision to
block the proposed merger, which according to the Commission, would
have turned Sidel’s already leading position on industrial
equipment for (PET) plastic bottles into a dominant one.
The merger would also have reinforced Tetra Laval’s already
dominant position on the carton-packaging market, the Commission
argued at the time (see EURACTIV, 25 Oct. 2002).
But the Court of First Instance’s rejection of those arguments
was confirmed in the appeal before the European Court of Justice
(ECJ) on Tuesday 15 February.
“The evidence submitted in support of the Commission’s arguments
was insufficient, incomplete, insignificant, inconsistent and
therefore inaccurate,” the judges said.
EU official documents
- European Court of Justice:The appeal against the judgement of the Court of First Instance annulling the decision of the European Commission prohibiting the merger of Tetra Laval and Sidel is dismissed(15 Feb. 2005) [FR] [FR] [DE]
- AP/Forbes:EU Ruling to Affect Many Antitrust Cases
- AP/Forbes:Update 2: EU Court Rules Against Antitrust Office
- IHT:Court says commission was wrong to block Tetra merger
- Bloomberg:EU Court Says Regulator Erred in Banning Tetra Merger (Update1)
- Guardian:EU's highest court rules veto of Tetra-Sidel merger was illegal
- La Tribune:Tetra-Laval, Sidel: la Cour européenne de justice déboute Bruxelles
- Le Monde:La Cour de justice européenne désavoue à nouveau Bruxelles
- N24:EU scheitert endgültig mit Fusionsverbot
- VWD:EuGH erklärt Fusionsverbot von Tetra Laval/Sidel für nichtig