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European Commission - Statement

Statement by Commissioner Vestager on announcement by Halliburton and Baker Hughes to withdraw from proposed merger

Brussels, 2 May 2016

The European Commission takes note of Halliburton and Baker Hughes' announcement that they are abandoning their proposed merger. This follows competition concerns against that proposed transaction expressed by a number of competition agencies across the world, including the Commission

The Commission had opened an in-depth investigation in January 2016.

Commissioner Margrethe Vestager in charge of competition policy said: "The exploration and production of oil and gas are key sectors in ensuring competitive energy prices for consumers and companies across the EU. They are also particularly important for the efficient use of available gas resources within the EU, a key element of our Energy Union strategy in terms of ensuring security of supply.

Every case has to be assessed on its facts and merits. 

In this case, based on the Commission's in-depth analysis, the transaction raised competition concerns on a very large number of markets related to oilfield services provided to oil and gas exploration and production companies in the EEA. In this regard, a number of customers contacted us to raise issues with the proposed transaction. 

The purpose of EU merger control is to prevent company tie-ups from restricting competition and leading to reduced innovation, higher prices or reduced choice for customers. 

Our investigation has been carried out in close cooperation with a number of competition agencies across the world such as the US Department of Justice, the Brazilian CADE or the Australian ACCC."

More information is available on the competition website, in the Commission's public case register under the case number M.7477.


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