European Parliament Questions Sony BMG Merger
December 18, 2008 at 8:51 AM (PT)
The indie sector has been given renewed hope that the SONY BMG merger story hasn’t ended following the EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT’s decision to ask the EC competition commissioner to justify her decision to approve the merger of the two majors in 2004, reports MUSICWEEK.COM. The EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT has fired off three questions to NEELIE KROES challenging the Commission about competition in the music market.
The questions are:
- Why did the Commission not carry out an in-depth investigation when it adopted its last approval decision?
- What is the Commission's strategy for making sure that SMEs have market access in concentrated sectors like music?
- Will the Commission adopt new rules or guidelines on how competition policy should be adapted to cultural markets such as music?
The commissioner has six weeks to provide a written explanation, although it is unclear what action PARLIAMENT can take if it doesn’t like her answers. Meanwhile, European indie organization IMPALA is still appealing the original EC decisions allowing SONY and BMG to merge, which led to an appeal in the Court of First Instance. An IMPALA spokesman says that the move by PARLIAMENT is quite rare and it means KROES has to justify her decision.