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For most of its existence, the merger task force (MTF) has enjoyed a reputation as a highly effective guardian of competitive market structures. In terms of sheer volume, the output of this relatively small unit has been impressive – the team has never shied away from tackling industry giants head on. However, recent defeats in a number of high profile court cases have dealt its image a very public blow. The Court of First Instance (CFI) told the Directorate-General of Competition (DG Comp), in no uncertain terms, to get its act together and support its decisions with much more thorough fact finding and analysis.

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