Acquisition of portfolios of non-performing loans (NPLs) has been commonplace in Serbia for several years already. And an accompanying issue has been whether such acquisitions need to be filed to the Serbian national competition authority (NCA) for merger examination. Now, the NCA has resolved that issue, by issuing an opinion on the matter.
Serbia still has a system of individual exemption of restrictive agreements based on prior notification to the national competition authority (NCA). What kind of agreements did the NCA exempt during 2018?
We wrote earlier about a planned JV between two leading retailers of consumer electronics and home appliances in Serbia, which went to Phase II. In the meantime, the parties seemed to have changed the structure of the transaction and, instead of a JV, the planned combination would consist in one of the involved retailers acquiring the other.
A peculiarity of competition law enforcement in Bosnia and Herzegovina is what could be called an ‘ethnic veto’ – there has to be a sort of an ethnic consensus within the Bosnian competition authority in order for any decision to be adopted. And, combined with the rules limiting the maximum duration of proceedings before the Competition Council, this in practice may lead to the blockade in the watchdog’s competition law enforcement.
Compared to its neighbors, Bosnia and Herzegovina has been known as a jurisdiction with relatively low merger filing fees. Will it stay like that if the proposed changes to the filing fees go through?