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Order terminating the Ringier/Híd Rádió concentration case

Today the order terminating the proceeding in the case of a concentration between Ringier and Híd Rádió has been published on the homepage of the Hungarian Competition Authority (GVH).

On 26 June 2009, the GVH published a press release on its home page about the fact that Ringier Kiadói Kft. (Ringier Publishing, hereinafter Ringier) had withdrawn its application for authorisation of the acquisition of control over Híd Rádió Zrt. (Híd Radio), thus the GVH terminated the proceeding conducted in this case. Last week the GVH put the order terminating the case in writing. The relating press release published on 26 June is available in English on the homepage.

In connection with the press release about the decision of the GVH, there have been several statements in the media disapproving that the GVH disclosed the decision to the public. According to the opinions released, there has not been any final decision in the case, the press release of the GVH is based on an internal draft document, which contains business secrets.

That is why the GVH deems it important to make public that every proceeding of the GVH is either closed by a decision (resolution on the merits of the case) or an order. That was the case in the Ringier-Híd Rádió proceeding as well. The GVH always discloses its decisions/orders in public. It is essential for the transparent functioning of the authority that the citizens paying taxes, players of the economic life and decision-makers know exactly what the GVH deals with, what professional aspects it is guided by in its everyday work. In the course of its communication activity, the GVH has always paid great attention to the fact that business secrets of those concerned by its decision would not be damaged. Therefore in the Ringier/Híd Rádió concentration case, neither the press release nor the order, which has just been disclosed, contains business secrets.

The press releases are usually disclosed after the written decision of the GVH, though in cases of high public interest, the GVH discloses the results as soon as the decision is made in order to provide the public with exact and authentic information at first hand and to prevent the media from disclosing market hearsays and gossips. Since the GVH had been experiencing high public concern in the Ringier/Híd Rádió concentration for weeks, it published its press release the day when the decision was made. This press release completely reflects the decision of the GVH.

Case number: Vj-155/2008.

Budapest, 6 July 2009

Hungarian Competition Authority
Communication Group

Further information:
András Mihálovits
Hungarian Competition Authority
Address: 1054 Budapest, V., Alkotmány u.5.
Postal address: 1245 Budapest, 5. POB. 1036