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Legal alerts / 17 May 2017

Legal Alert – Upcoming Changes to the Finnish Merger Regime

A working group appointed by the Ministry of Employment and the Economy proposes drastic changes to the Finnish Competition Act in the field of social welfare and health care, as a result of which a merger control is proposed to apply temporarily to practically all social welfare and health care related corporate transactions in Finland.

The working group has published a draft for a government bill for the purposes of a public hearing. Due to the short timeframe given in this matter, the working group only had two months to work on their proposals. Third parties are invited to comment on the draft until 24 May 2017.

The working group proposes adding a new section under which the Finnish merger control will apply to all social welfare and health care related corporate transactions where at least one of the parties provides social welfare and health care services or imaging or laboratory services in Finland. However, the merger control will not be applied to corporate transactions where

  • all of the parties are self-employed persons;
  • all of the parties operate under the same private clinic or under the same company or group of companies operating in the field of social welfare and health care;
  • there are two parties to the transaction, and one of the parties is a company that sells the services of at most two doctors or other professionals in the field of social welfare and health care.

The Finnish Competition and Consumer Authority’s time limit for processing the notifications is proposed to be extended from one month to 45 business days in social welfare and health care transactions only.

The Government appears to be proceeding with the changes quickly. Borenius will organise a seminar about the proposed changes on 5 September 2017. Please save the date if you are interested in learning more.

Borenius’ lawyers are available to assist in addressing any questions you may have regarding this client alert. Please feel free to contact any of the Borenius attorneys listed in this alert or those with whom you usually work.

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