Select Committee on Science and Technology Fourteenth Report

Appendix 2

Response from the Office of Fair Trading (OFT)

The OFT welcomes the Science and Technology Committee's Report, which highlights and develops concerns identified in our 2002 review.

The OFT also welcomes, especially given the international nature of the market, that the European Commission is now conducting a study of the market, and we await the findings with interest. We have made the Commission aware of our interest in the market and our previous work on it. We also note that other research is under way, for example the British Academy study of electronic resources for research in the humanities and social sciences.

In view of these studies, the international nature of the issues, and competing resource commitments, the OFT does not believe that it would be appropriate for it to commit to biennial reporting on the market for STM journals as proposed by the Committee. However the OFT will certainly continue to monitor market developments in addition, of course, to applying merger and other competition law as evolving circumstances warrant.

7 September 2004

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