Ricard is putting the newly enacted Freedom of Information Act (the "FOI
Act") to the test in its long-running pursuit of alleged anticompetitive
behaviour by rival Bacardi. Competition law investigations into Bacardi were
cut short when the Office of Fair Trading (the "OFT") accepted
binding commitments from the company in exchange for agreeing to take no
further action.
Pernod Ricard is claiming that the OFT was wrong to accept assurances from
its archrival because it claims that the assurances do not actually address
the competition problem. Pernod has appealed to the Competition Appeal Tribunal
and is now looking to use the FOI Act to gain access to documents sent between
the watchdog and Bacardi to support its action.

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