Mergers Paused: PCC Suspends Merger Processes and Timelines

The acceptance of new merger notification forms and letters of non-coverage by the Philippine Commission a Commission (“PCC”) is suspended until the community quarantine is lifted. Likewise, the evaluation of sufficiency of notification forms and letters of non-coverage already submitted to the PCC is also suspended. These are all made part of the of the PCC’s Resolution effective 16 March 2020.

Generally, under the Philippine Competition Act (R.A. 10667 or “PCA”) parties to a merger or acquisitions (“M&As”) which meet the mandatory declared thresholds are required to notify the PCA within 30 calendar days from signing of the definitive agreement relating to the merger or acquisition, while parties to M&As which fall below the compulsory notification thresholds may request for the issuance of a letter of non-coverage from compulsory notification.

The running of the 30-day notification period under Section 3.1 of the Rules on Merger Procedures was also suspended. Notifying parties shall retain the balance of the 30-day notification period to submit their notification forms, while notification forms submitted during the remaining period shall be considered to have been timely filed.