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Enterprise Act 2002

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This is the original version (as it was originally enacted).

59Intervention by Secretary of State in special public interest cases
This section has no associated Explanatory Notes

(1)Subsection (2) applies where the Secretary of State has reasonable grounds for suspecting that it is or may be the case that a special merger situation has been created or arrangements are in progress or in contemplation which, if carried into effect, will result in the creation of a special merger situation.

(2)The Secretary of State may give a notice to the OFT (in this Part “a special intervention notice”) if he believes that it is or may be the case that one or more than one consideration specified in section 58 is relevant to a consideration of the special merger situation concerned.

(3)For the purposes of this Part a special merger situation has been created if—

(a)no relevant merger situation has been created because of section 23(1)(b) and (2)(b); but

(b)a relevant merger situation would have been created if those enactments were disregarded;

and the conditions mentioned in subsection (4) are satisfied.

(4)The conditions mentioned in this subsection are that, immediately before the enterprises concerned ceased to be distinct—

(a)at least one of the enterprises concerned was carried on in the United Kingdom or by or under the control of a body corporate incorporated in the United Kingdom; and

(b)a person carrying on one or more of the enterprises concerned was a relevant government contractor.

(5)For the purposes of deciding whether a relevant merger situation has been created or whether arrangements are in progress or in contemplation which, if carried into effect, will result in the creation of a relevant merger situation, sections 23 to 32 (read together with section 34) shall apply for the purposes of this Chapter as they do for the purposes of Chapter 1 but subject to subsection (6).

(6)In their application by virtue of subsection (5) sections 23 to 32 shall have effect as if—

(a)for paragraph (a) of section 23(9) there were substituted—

(a)in relation to the giving of a special intervention notice, the time when the notice is given;

(aa)in relation to the making of a report by the OFT under section 61, the time of the making of the report;

(ab)in the case of a reference which is treated as having been made under section 62(2) by virtue of section 64(2), such time as the Commission may determine; and;

(b)the references to the OFT in section 24(2)(a) and (b) included references to the Secretary of State;

(c)the references to the OFT in sections 25(1) to (3), (6) and (8) and 31 included references to the Secretary of State;

(d)the references to the OFT in section 25(4) and (5) were references to the Secretary of State;

(e)the reference in section 25(4) to section 73 were a reference to paragraph 3 of Schedule 7;

(f)the reference in section 25(12) to one extension were a reference to one extension by the OFT and one extension by the Secretary of State;

(g)the powers to extend time-limits under section 25 as applied by subsection (5) above, and the power to request information under section 31(1) as so applied, were not exercisable by the OFT or the Secretary of State before the giving of a special intervention notice;

(h)in subsection (1) of section 31 for the words “section 22” there were substituted “section 62(2)” and, in the application of that subsection to the OFT, for the word “deciding” there were substituted “enabling the Secretary of State to decide”;

(i)in the case of the giving of special intervention notices, the references in sections 23 to 32 to the making of a reference or a reference were, so far as necessary, references to the giving of a special intervention notice or a special intervention notice; and

(j)the references to the OFT in section 32(2)(a) to (c) and (3) were construed in accordance with the above modifications.

(7)No more than one special intervention notice shall be given under subsection (2) in relation to the same special merger situation.

(8)In this section “relevant government contractor” means—

(a)a government contractor—

(i)who has been notified by or on behalf of the Secretary of State of information, documents or other articles relating to defence and of a confidential nature which the government contractor or an employee of his may hold or receive in connection with being such a contractor; and

(ii)whose notification has not been revoked by or on behalf of the Secretary of State; or

(b)a former government contractor who was so notified when he was a government contractor and whose notification has not been revoked by or on behalf of the Secretary of State.

(9)In this section—

  • “defence” has the same meaning as in section 2 of the Official Secrets Act 1989 (c. 6); and

  • “government contractor” has the same meaning as in the Act of 1989 and includes any sub-contractor of a government contractor, any sub-contractor of that sub-contractor and any other sub-contractor in a chain of sub-contractors which begins with the sub-contractor of the government contractor.

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