The EU General Court's Judgments in the Air Berlin Cases - A Case Note and Comment

CONCURRENCES COMPETITION LAW REVIEW Nr. 1-2022, 123-126 (2022) (https://www.concurrences.com)

7 Pages Posted: 6 Apr 2022

See all articles by Simon Vande Walle

Simon Vande Walle

University of Tokyo - Graduate Schools for Law and Politics

Date Written: January 21, 2022

Abstract

This note summarizes and comments on two judgments that are important for EU merger control in the aviation sector. In 2017, Lufthansa and easyJet acquired parts of Air Berlin, after the German airline became insolvent. The European Commission approved these acquisitions but LOT, a Polish airline, disagreed and appealed. The EU General Court subsequently affirmed the Commission decisions.

The most immediate contribution of these judgments lies in their answer to a rather technical question: if an airline goes bankrupt and its slots are acquired by other airlines, how should the Commission assess the impact of this transfer? But more broadly, the General Court's confirmation of the Commission’s slot portfolio analysis may herald a greater focus on slots in EU competition law enforcement. In the United States, the Department of Justice has long been attentive to concentrations of slots at airports such as Newark and Reagan National.

Keywords: competition law, antitrust, merger control

JEL Classification: antitrust

Suggested Citation

Vande Walle, Simon, The EU General Court's Judgments in the Air Berlin Cases - A Case Note and Comment (January 21, 2022). CONCURRENCES COMPETITION LAW REVIEW Nr. 1-2022, 123-126 (2022) (https://www.concurrences.com), Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=4057925

Simon Vande Walle (Contact Author)

University of Tokyo - Graduate Schools for Law and Politics ( email )

7-3-1 Hongo Bunkyo-Ku
Tokyo, 113-0033
Japan

HOME PAGE: http://www.simonvandewalle.eu

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