EU & Competition

Ellex Klavins has longstanding experience in handling competition issues at both the EU and national levels. Our firm operates in many industries that are regulated or have been deregulated in recent decades. We regularly advise clients on antitrust issues, help companies manage the competition risks associated with doing business in the EU and provide representation across the main regulatory fields governed by EU law as well as in a number of regulatory areas.
Key projects in the field

Key contacts

Liga Merwin

Managing Partner

Head of EU & Competition Practice

Mārtiņš Gailis

Associate Partner

IP and Competition
Head of Intellectual Property Practice
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Liga Merwin among 100 of the most remarkable female competition experts in the world according to GCR
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Key projects in the field

We successfully represented SIA “Depozīta Iepakojuma Operators” in bidding for award of the status of a deposit and return system operator
On 29 December 2020, the State Environmental Service (SES) selected a deposit and return system (DRS) operator for packaging of beverages – SIA "Depozīta Iepakojuma Operators" – as a result of elaborate proceedings. SIA “Depozīta Iepakojuma Operators” will be entrusted with development and management of a deposit and return system of the packaging of beverages for a period of 7 years in Latvia.
SES evaluated two bidders: SIA "Depozīta Iepakojuma Operators" owned by the largest beverage producers, and SIA "Nulles depozīts" owned mainly by representatives of waste management business.
SIA “Depozīta Iepakojuma Operators” received a higher rating under both criteria: the submitted plan regarding organization and implementation of the system, and with respect to the share of the overall volume of returnable packaging.
The deposit and return system will be implemented in Latvia from February 2022.
Ellex Klavins provided legal services to SIA “Depozīta Iepakojuma Operators” and its participants throughout the whole selection process of the deposit system operator: including development of relevant regulations and support in the preparation of the bidder's documents and throughout the selection process at SES. Advising on legal framework for implementation of the deposit and return system is still an ongoing process.
Ellex Klavins team included Managing Partner Liga Merwin, Senior Counsel Iveta Ceple, Associate Pauls Ancs, Senior Associate Inese Freivalde, Associate Kristers Losans, Associate Partner Martins Gailis, and Senior Associate Edvijs Zandars.
We successfully advised on drafting the law to implement a deposit system in Latvia
On October 24, 2019, the Parliament of Latvia (Saeima) adopted the long-awaited amendments to the Packaging Act that would enable introduction of a deposit-return system (DRS) for packaging of beverages in Latvia as of February 1, 2022.
These amendments to the law provide for introduction of a legal framework governing operation of the deposit-return system for beverage packaging.
These amendments have been discussed since 2001; however, whereas the Packaging Act was first adopted in 2002. The legislative bill of the deposit-return system was one of the most urgent topics for discussion in recent years.
In this case experts of Ellex Klavins successfully advised representatives of the beverage production industry on the implementation of a deposit-return system for packaging and assisted in the process of drafting the legislative bill governing the deposit-return system in Latvia.
Liga Mervin, Managing Partner of Ellex Klavins, and Pauls Ancs, Associate, provided legal advice to the client and participated in drafting the bill.
We successfully represented JCDecaux Latvia about placement of outdoor advertising on public transportation stops of Rīgas Satiksme
During the course of proceedings, the Competition Council concluded that Rīgas Satiksme (the main provider of public transport services in Riga) had leased public transport stops to the company “Pilsētas Līnijas”, on condition that a number of them would be rebuilt. PL transferred this right further to our client JCDecaux, which, after the reconstruction of the transportation stops, was going to return them to RS at no additional charge.
After assessing the terms of the contract, CC identified certain points that they considered to potentially limit competition over a longer period of time: the long term of the contract; the "reservation" of advertising rights for all future and potential RS transportation stops; automatic renewal of the contract.
After evaluating JCD's investment in the construction of the public transport stops, CC concluded them to be objectively justified in relation to the specific contract. All three companies involved in the case submitted a written commitment to change certain clauses of the agreement, thereby eliminating the potential negative effects on the market. Consequently, the case has been successfully terminated without the imposition of any fines, and the change in the specific clauses has removed CC's concerns about a breach of the Competition Law.
JCDecaux Latvia in this case was represented by Ellex Klavins partner Liga Merwin and senior associates Maris Brizgo and Martins Gailis.