Ex-FTC Commissioner Appointed to New U.K. Antitrust Committee

Bill Kovacic, a former commissioner at the U.S. Federal Trade Commission, was appointed as a non-executive director at the soon-to-be-created antitrust regulator, the Competition and Markets Authority.

Kovacic and four other non-executive directors were appointed to the watchdog’s board, the U.K.’s Business Secretary, Vince Cable, said today in a statement. The CMA, which is scheduled to begin operating on April 1, 2014, will combine the Competition Commission and some of the antitrust functions of the Office of Fair Trading.

Philip Lowe, the director general for energy at the European Commission, Carolyn Fairbairn, a non-executive director for Lloyds Banking Group Plc, Alan Giles, a non-executive director for the Office of Fair Trading, and Annetje Ottow, head of the Authority for Consumers and Markets Academy in the Netherlands, were also named non-executive directors at the CMA.

“An effective competition regime is essential for a strong economy and to protect consumers,” Cable said in a statement. “The U.K. regime is already world-class, and is underpinned by robust enforcement of the law but there is still scope for improvement.”

David Currie and Alex Chisholm were previously named chairman and chief executive of the CMA. Three executive directors are yet to be named. The government is planning a consultation on the U.K.’s long-term plans for competition.

Last month, Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne said that the budget of the CMA will be increased by 16 million pounds ($24 million) in the 2015 to 2016 financial year, the government said in the statement.

To contact the reporter on this story: Nicole Mortimer in London at nmortimer1@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Anthony Aarons at aaarons@bloomberg.net

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