ECONOMY

EC: Stop meddling with watchdog

ec-stop-meddling-with-watchdog

Brussels appears to have demanded the withdrawal or at least the amendment of recent regulations drawn up by the Economy Ministry on the composition and operation of Greece’s Competition Commission.

A letter sent to Athens by European Commissioner for Competition Margrethe Vestager addresses the European Commission’s disagreement with the Greek government’s intervention, opposition that was also expressed by the deputy director general of the Commission’s Directorate General for Competition, Gert-Jan Koopman, during his recent visit to Athens.

A source close to Vestager told Kathimerini, “Both Commissioner Vestager and the deputy director general consider the issue of the Greek Competition Commission very serious and are fully aware of it.” Legislative interventions that have not secured the approval of the country’s creditors could be considered a “unilateral move,” which is why the issue could form part of negotiations for the first review bailout of Greece’s third bailout.

The European Commission appears to oppose the intervention aimed at forcing senior officials of the independent committee out and will likely make its view known publicly when invited to respond to a question by New Democracy MEP Maria Spyraki next week.