MEPs have backed a proposal to simplify mergers between EU companies across borders.
The vote, on the 10th Company Law Directive, was welcomed by Internal Market Commissioner McCreevy, who saw the measure as a “major step in favour of EU businesses”.
The directive sets up the general principle that national law should be used to govern mergers between companies from different member states. This should avoid the previous costly position where acquired companies often had to be wound up. The new rules will apply to all companies with share capital and will be of particular benefit to SMEs, which are too small to use the procedures of the European Company statute.
In April, the Commission launched a consultation on obstacles to cross-border mergers in the financial services sector.