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Enterprise Act 2002

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134 Questions to be decided on market investigation referencesE+W+S+N.I.
This section has no associated Explanatory Notes

(1)The Commission shall, on a market investigation reference, decide whether any feature, or combination of features, of each relevant market prevents, restricts or distorts competition in connection with the supply or acquisition of any goods or services in the United Kingdom or a part of the United Kingdom.

(2)For the purposes of this Part, in relation to a market investigation reference, there is an adverse effect on competition if any feature, or combination of features, of a relevant market prevents, restricts or distorts competition in connection with the supply or acquisition of any goods or services in the United Kingdom or a part of the United Kingdom.

(3)In subsections (1) and (2) “relevant market” means—

(a)in the case of subsection (2) so far as it applies in connection with a possible reference, a market in the United Kingdom—

(i)for goods or services of a description to be specified in the reference; and

(ii)which would not be excluded from investigation by virtue of section 133(2); and

(b)in any other case, a market in the United Kingdom—

(i)for goods or services of a description specified in the reference concerned; and

(ii)which is not excluded from investigation by virtue of section 133(2).

(4)The Commission shall, if it has decided on a market investigation reference that there is an adverse effect on competition, decide the following additional questions—

(a)whether action should be taken by it under section 138 for the purpose of remedying, mitigating or preventing the adverse effect on competition concerned or any detrimental effect on customers so far as it has resulted from, or may be expected to result from, the adverse effect on competition;

(b)whether it should recommend the taking of action by others for the purpose of remedying, mitigating or preventing the adverse effect on competition concerned or any detrimental effect on customers so far as it has resulted from, or may be expected to result from, the adverse effect on competition; and

(c)in either case, if action should be taken, what action should be taken and what is to be remedied, mitigated or prevented.

(5)For the purposes of this Part, in relation to a market investigation reference, there is a detrimental effect on customers if there is a detrimental effect on customers or future customers in the form of—

(a)higher prices, lower quality or less choice of goods or services in any market in the United Kingdom (whether or not the market to which the feature or features concerned relate); or

(b)less innovation in relation to such goods or services.

(6)In deciding the questions mentioned in subsection (4), the Commission shall, in particular, have regard to the need to achieve as comprehensive a solution as is reasonable and practicable to the adverse effect on competition and any detrimental effects on customers so far as resulting from the adverse effect on competition.

(7)In deciding the questions mentioned in subsection (4), the Commission may, in particular, have regard to the effect of any action on any relevant customer benefits of the feature or features of the market concerned.

(8)For the purposes of this Part a benefit is a relevant customer benefit of a feature or features of a market if—

(a)it is a benefit to customers or future customers in the form of—

(i)lower prices, higher quality or greater choice of goods or services in any market in the United Kingdom (whether or not the market to which the feature or features concerned relate); or

(ii)greater innovation in relation to such goods or services; and

(b)the Commission, the Secretary of State or (as the case may be) the OFT believes that—

(i)the benefit has accrued as a result (whether wholly or partly) of the feature or features concerned or may be expected to accrue within a reasonable period as a result (whether wholly or partly) of that feature or those features; and

(ii)the benefit was, or is, unlikely to accrue without the feature or features concerned.

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Modifications etc. (not altering text)

C1Ss. 35, 36, 47, 63, 134 and 141 extended (20.6.2003) by 1977 c. 37, s. 50A(6) (as inserted by Enterprise Act 2002 (c. 40), ss. 278, 279, Sch. 25 para. 8(2)); S.I. 2003/1397 {art. 2(1)}, Sch. (with art. 8)

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