Portugal’s new competition law and Competition Authority (PCA) Council may finally be what instils a lacking competition culture in the country, say lawyers, while Spain’s new Super Regulator has everyone on tenterhooks as to whether or not it is a positive step forwards.
It has been ‘all-change’ in Portugal’s competition regime, says Mário Marques Mendes, Founding Partner of Marques Mendes & Associados. A new law and personnel change at the Portuguese Competition Authority (PCA) have seen a revamp in enforcement attitudes. Professor António Ferreira Gomes, former Head of the PCA’s Merger Control Department, was also recently appointed as the new President. And the combination is expected to lead to a fresh approach to enforcement.
Portugal’s post-bailout obligations to open up its state-controlled assets to private bidders has already seen prize assets such as ANA – Aeroportos de Portugal, CTT – Correios de Portugal, and TAP offered to market. Now, according to José Luis Esquível, Managing Partner of Esquível Advogados, it is the major domestic passenger transit concessions in Portugal that are next on the list.