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A December 2022 decision by the Austrian Constitutional Court to annul the media privilege in the Austrian Data Protection Act has raised questions on how the country’s approach to the legal landscape regulating the media will change. Wolf Theiss Partner Kurt Retter and DLA Piper Counsel Stefan Panic analyze the ruling’s implications.

Investment activity in Austria’s technology sector remained strong in 2022, despite the global economic downturn caused by the pandemic. Cerha Hempel Partner Christoph Reiter, Schoenherr Partner Thomas Kulnigg, and Dorda Managing Partner Axel Anderl talk about where the money is coming from, where it is going, and what can be expected for 2023.

The mandatory fee-based publication in the print medium of the Official Journal of the Wiener Zeitung (Amtsblatt der Wiener Zeitung) ("Official Journal") is going to be replaced by free-of-charge publication on the new Electronic Announcement and Information Platform of the Federation ("EVI").

Schoenherr, working alongside Linklaters and Paul Weiss Rifkind Wharton & Garrison, has advised the Carrier Global Corporation on its acquisition of Viessmann Climate Solutions. Hengeler Mueller and, reportedly, Davis Polk & Wardwell advised Viessmann Climate Solutions.

Regulation (EU) 2022/1925, The Digital Markets Act, is set to apply from 2 May 2023

Addressing digital developments and concerns regarding contestability and fairness in the digital economy, the Digital Markets Act – an ex-ante regulatory system – entered into force on 1 November 2022 and will apply from 2 May 2023. Designed to complement competition law, the Digital Markets Act lays down prohibitions and obligations for designated gatekeepers that provide a range of “core platform services” and gives the European Commission broad investigative and enforcement powers. Generally speaking, the Digital Markets Act aims to prevent unfair practices by gatekeepers.

On 20 April 2023 the European Parliament ("EP") finally approved the regulation on markets in crypto-assets ("MiCAR"). The approved final text of the MiCAR is yet to be formally endorsed by the Council, but the EP's approval means the biggest legislative hurdle towards the MiCAR entering into force has been cleared. The approval of the MiCAR follows the finalisation of the last details of the text, after a provisional agreement on the final draft compromise was reached during trilogue negotiations in June 2022.

On 18 April 2023, the EU Parliament approved the provisional political plan to reduce CO2 emissions in the EU agreed on by the Council and the European Parliament on 18 December 2022. This plan is based on proposals of the "Fit for 55" package presented by the European Commission in 2021 to reduce the EU's net greenhouse gas emissions by 55 % compared to 1990 levels by 2030 and to achieve climate neutrality by 2050.

Schoenherr has advised joint lead managers Erste Group Bank, Intesa Sanpaolo, Landesbank Baden-Wuerttemberg, Landesbank Hessen-Thueringen Girozentrale, Natixis, and TD Global Finance on Erste Group Bank's EUR 1 billion issuance of 3.125% mortgage Pfandbriefe due October 14, 2027. Wolf Theiss advised Erste.

A new promotion round saw 62 lawyers become Partners at CMS – spanning 25 cities across the UK, Europe, the Middle East, Africa, and Latin America – including Arno Zimmermann, Hans Lederer, and Klaus Pateter in Vienna, Alicja Zalewska-Orabona in Warsaw, and Mihai Jiganie-Serban in Bucharest.

As Lexpo – The Legal Innovation Event returns in 2023 after a three-year hiatus, showcasing the latest trends in legal innovation in Continental Europe, CEELM spoke with Dentons Europe Director of Innovation and Member of Lexpo's Advisory Board Andrea Miskolczi to gain an insight into the current state of technology and innovation in CEE, and what the event's attendees have to look forward to.

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