By Janina C. Lim, April 29 2019; Business World

Image Credit to Business World

THE Philippine Competition Commission (PCC) asked the Court of Appeals to dismiss Grab Philippines’ (MyTaxi.PH, Inc.) and Uber Philippines’ joint petition questioning the agency’s authority to intervene in a consummated deal that falls below legal notification thresholds.

Competition Commissioner Johannes Benjamin R. Bernabe said the anti-trust agency submitted its position to the appellate court last month.

“The CA asked us to file a comment… We cited the provisions in our law which allowed us to do that,” Mr. Bernabe told reporters in Makati City last week.

Mr. Bernabe said the ride-hailing firms challenged before the court in late 2018 the PCC’s authority to conditionally approve the March 2018 acquisition subject to the performance of interim measures related to its quality of service and pricing.

Republic Act 10667, or the Philippine Competition Act of 2015, authorizes the PCC to review mergers and acquisitions that may result in a substantial lessening of competition.

The law also gives the PCC the power to review consummated deals motu propio, or on its own initiative, if it has sufficient evidence or reasonable grounds that the deal, even if it falls below the notifiable threshold values, is anti competitive.

Grab Philippines was asked to comment but had not replied at deadline time. — Janina C. Lim