Indoor market

STX takeover of Aker postponed

(B2) The European Commission opened, on Thursday, a “ thorough investigation », on the proposed acquisition of the Norwegian company Aker Yards by the South Korean company STX. The Commission is especially concerned about the fact that STX was to enter the particularly closed cruise ship market, and the anti-competitive effect that this merger would have on the European market. The Commission now has 90 working days, until 15 May 2008, to take a final decision. In particular, it may require the buyer to make certain concessions capable of making him accept the operation. The Commission can also render its decision before the deadline if it considers itself sufficiently informed. In this interval, all interested parties – competitors, unions, local authorities, etc. – can make their points of view heard by the Directorate General for Competition, which is examining the case in Brussels. But only the economic interests – the impact on the market – are taken into account; not at all the social or territorial implications of such a rapprochement.


Nicolas Gros Verheyde

Chief editor of the B2 site. Graduated in European law from the University of Paris I Pantheon Sorbonne and listener to the 65th session of the IHEDN (Institut des Hautes Etudes de la Défense Nationale. Journalist since 1989, founded B2 - Bruxelles2 in 2008. EU/NATO correspondent in Brussels for Sud-Ouest (previously West-France and France-Soir).