European Commission warming to Oracle

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European Commission warming to Oracle

The European Commission (EC) today said that it is in "constructive talks" with Oracle about the ongoing maintenance of MySQL, raising the prospect that it will finally approve the database giant's acquisition of Sun.

Oracle has submitted its proposals for MySQL ahead of a date set by the EC, saying that anyone that wants access to MySQL can do so without taking on a commercial licence. This assurance appears to have allayed some of the EC's concerns.

In a statement the EC said, "Today's announcement by Oracle of a series of undertakings to customers, developers and users of MySQL is an important new element to be taken into account in the ongoing proceedings.

"In particular, Oracle's binding contractual undertakings to storage engine vendors regarding copyright non-assertion and the extension over a period of up to five years of the terms and conditions of existing commercial licences are significant new facts."

The legal deadline for a final decision on the Oracle/Sun deal under the EU Merger Regulation is 27 January 2010. The acquisition already has the blessing of regulators in the US.

For its part, the EC said today that it was now optimistic that the end result of its investigations would be a satisfactory one.

"In this context, Competition Commissioner Neelie Kroes recalls and confirms her statement of 9 December 2009 that she is optimistic that the case will have a satisfactory outcome, while ensuring that the transaction will not have an adverse impact on effective competition in the European database market," the EC said.

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