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Turkey – Competition

Candidate countries conduct negotiations with the European Union (EU) in order to prepare themselves for accession. The accession negotiations cover the adoption and implementation of European legislation (acquis) and, more specifically, the priorities identified jointly by the Commission and the candidate countries in the analytical assessment (or ‘screening’) of the EU’s political and legislative acquis. Each year, the Commission reviews the progress made by candidates and evaluates the efforts required before their accession. This monitoring is the subject of annual reports presented to the Council and the European Parliament.

ACT

Commission Report [COM(2011) 666 final – SEC(2011) 1201 – Not published in the Official Journal].

SUMMARY

In its 2011 Report, the European Commission identifies satisfactory progress concerning State Aid and notes Turkey’s alignment with the European Union acquis on matters concerning cartels and anti-trust. However, some state aid schemes still need to be aligned with European legislation.

EUROPEAN UNION ACQUIS (according to the Commission’s words)

The legislation on competition covers both anti-trust and state aid control policies. It includes rules and procedures for fighting anti-competitive behaviour by companies (restrictive agreements between undertakings and abuse of dominant position), monitoring mergers and for preventing governments from granting state aid which distorts competition in the internal market. Generally, the competition rules are directly applicable throughout the Union, and Member States must cooperate fully with the Commission in the enforcement of these rules.

EVALUATION (according to the Commission’s words)

On competition policy, Turkey's alignment record in the field of anti-trust and merger control is high. The Competition Authority enforces antitrust rules effectively, with a satisfactory level of independence. Good progress has been made in the area of State aid. In particular, the State Aid Monitoring Authority is now set up. However, a number of important State aid schemes remain to be aligned with the rules of the Customs Union.

RELATED ACTS

Commission Report [COM(2010) 660 final – SEC(2010) 1327 – Not published in the Official Journal].
In its 2010 Report the Commission noted the high level of alignment achieved by Turkey and its proper application of the rules on competition. Progress has also been made in the area of state aid.

Commission Report [COM(2009) 533 final – SEC(2009) 1334 – Not published in the Official Journal].

Commission Report [COM(2008) 674 final – SEC(2008) 2699 final – Not published in the Official Journal].
The November 2008 Report noted satisfactory harmonisation in antitrust policy and the monitoring of mergers but still reported the absence of progress in the area of State aid.

Commission Report [COM(2007) 663 final – SEC(2007) 1436 final – Not published in the Official Journal].
The November 2007 Report stated that further headway had been made in the area of antitrust policy but noted that there had been no progress with regard to state aid.

Commission Report [COM(2006) 649 final – SEC(2006) 1390 final – Not published in the Official Journal].
The November 2006 Report noted that harmonisation with the EU legislation regarding restrictive agreements was well advanced and improving all the time. It noted though that no progress had been made with state aid.

Commission Report [COM(2005) 561 final – SEC(2005) 1426 final – Not published in the Official Journal].
The November 2005 Report noted that Turkey had made only limited progress with regard to competition issues. In the area of antitrust, it again acknowledged that legislation had been aligned and that application of the rules was largely satisfactory, but it found that there was still no progress concerning state aid.

Commission Report [COM(2004) 656 final – SEC(2004) 1201 final – Not published in the Official Journal].
The October 2004 Report recorded Turkey’s progress in the area of antitrust policy but noted that no progress had been made with state aid, a situation that Turkey urgently needed to remedy.

Commission Report [COM(2003) 676 final - SEC(2003) 1212 final - Not published in the Official Journal].
The November 2003 Report found that, although Turkey had made some progress in the antitrust field, further efforts were needed as regards alignment of block exemptions, adjustment of state monopolies and companies enjoying special rights. Turkey should urgently adopt legislation on the monitoring of state aid and establish a state aid supervisory authority.

Commission Report [COM(2002) 700 final - SEC(2002) 1412 final - Not published in the Official Journal].
The October 2002 Report found that Turkey had continued to make progress in the antitrust field but that progress on state aid monitoring and the adaptation of state monopolies had been very limited.

Commission Report [COM(2001) 700 final - SEC(2001) 1756 final - Not published in the Official Journal].
The November 2001 Report highlighted substantial progress on antitrust matters but none whatsoever on state aid (the supervisory authority was not operational until January 2003). In addition, despite the fact that the transitional period allowed by the customs union agreement ended in 1998, the liberalisation process started by Turkey was inadequate (see the state monopoly for alcohol and tobacco).

Commission Report [COM(2000) 713 final - Not published in the Official Journal].
The November 2000 Report found that Turkey was coming into line with the EU legislation and it had adopted most of the antitrust secondary legislation. No progress had been made, on the other hand, in adjusting monopolies and the situation was still far from satisfactory. As no state aid supervisory authority had been set up, progress in this area was limited.

Commission Report [COM(1999) 513 final - Not published in the Official Journal].
The 1999 Report found that, despite the changes made to the Competition Act, progress still had to be made in antitrust matters. The Commission was particularly concerned about the privileges enjoyed by certain firms in monopoly positions and holding exclusive rights. The arrangements applying in Turkey for state aid were still being discussed by the Commission and the Turkish authorities.

Commission Report [COM(1998) 711 final - Not published in the Official Journal.

Last updated: 30.12.2011

See also

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