Orange and T-Mobile announced their intention to merge last year. However, the European Commission had to look into it first. Today it has been approved with European Competition Commissioner Joaquín Almunia stating..
“I am happy that we managed to resolve the competition issues in this case quickly in close cooperation with the Member State concerned.”
The deal does mean that T-Mobile and 3UK will have to change their network sharing agreement though. The initial merge could have threatened 3UK’s viability on the market and possibly eliminate a competitor. A revised agreement was put forward which meant that 3UK will secure its position as a competitive force on the market, and offered to divest 15 MHz of spectrum at the 1800 MHz level. The Commission concluded that the commitments offered by the parties remedy the identified competition concerns.
Link – europa.eu