The Competition Commission of India (CCI) has amended combination regulations to allow withdrawal and refiling of merger notices seeking approvals with a view to simplifying and providing clarity in the procedure.
The watchdog in a tweet Wednesday announced that it has amended the Combination Regulations vide notification dated October 9, 2018, "to provide certainty and transparency and to expedite faster disposal of combination cases".
With the amendment, the parties to combinations can now submit remedies voluntarily in response to the notice issued under Section 29(1) of the Act. If such remedies are considered sufficient to address the perceived competition harm, the combination can be approved.
According to section 29 (1), commission, it is in the opinion that a combination is likely to cause an appreciable adverse effect on competition, it issues a show cause notice to the parties to combination calling upon them to respond, as to why investigation in respect of such combination should not be conducted.
This amendment is expected to expedite disposal of such combination cases.
In another significant amendment, where the notice regarding the merger is found to exhibit significant information gaps, parties to combinations are allowed to withdraw the notice and refile the same.
With this amendment, the parties could address the deficiencies without facing an invalidation by CCI.
Besides, in case the notice is withdrawn, fee already paid in respect of such notice shall be adjusted against the fee payable in respect of new notice if the refiling is done within a period of three months.
Apart from these, certain consequential and other clarificatory changes have also been made in the Combination Regulations.
In July this year, the fair trade regulator had invited comments for the amendments regarding the combination regulations.
Combinations beyond a certain threshold mandatorily require approval from the regulator.
(With inputs from agencies.)