EU competition strategy confirms vigorous competition enforcement goal but must resist industrial policy lobbying

PRESS RELEASE - 18.11.2021

The European Consumer Organisation (BEUC) welcomes the European Commission’s new strategy “A competition policy fit for new challenges”, which outlines the review of EU competition policy tools for the twin digital and green transitions.

Monique Goyens, Director General of BEUC, commented:

“The Commission rightly focuses on strong and effective competition policy and enforcement as a tool to ensure consumers benefit from lower prices, wider available choice and higher quality. In addition, we support the Commission’s intention to use competition policy to ensure a fair and sustainable green transition and a digital economy that works in the best interests of consumers.”

“The Commission must however continue to resist extremely hard lobbying by big European companies to weaken merger control in the name of global competitiveness. The Commission needs to be stricter on merger control, notably in the digital sector, where it needs to pay greater attention to likely network effects and data consolidation. Big tech has been acquiring companies across markets and this risks restricting consumer choice and hindering innovation by new market players and rivals of big tech companies.”

Nov 2021