MMC turns to PR to communicate transparency

Competition arbiter the Monopolies and Mergers Commission (MMC) is seeking a PR agency to help it communicate the Government’s plans to depoliticise the way controversial mergers are regulated.

Competition arbiter the Monopolies and Mergers Commission (MMC) is

seeking a PR agency to help it communicate the Government’s plans to

depoliticise the way controversial mergers are regulated.



Under Trade and Industry Secretary Stephen Byers’ radical changes, the

MMC will be replaced by a more independent regulator, the Competition

Commission (PR Week, 5 February). The new commission will have the final

say on whether all mergers and acquisitions should be passed, save those

raising defence ornational security concerns.



The current rules mean that Byers can wave a merger through even if the

MMC has ruled it to be against the public interest.



The MMC has sent a brief to selected agencies, inviting them to propose

a strategy for communicating these changes to audiences including the

media, business and political opinion-formers. The agency would also be

briefed to sound out how the business community would view moves to

further open competition decisions to outside scrutiny, for example by

publishing evidence submitted to the MMC.



A spokeswoman for the MMC confirmed the commission has tendered for an

agency. ’We’ve identified things we wish to do to become more

transparent and want PR help,’ she said. She added that the exact brief

had yet to be determined and would depend on agency proposals. The MMC

hopes to appoint in the next two weeks.



Leader, p9.



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