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BRUSSELS, Jan 27 (Reuters) - Europe's second-highest court rejected on Tuesday an attempt by the world's largest chip-maker Intel Corp INTC.O to delay a deadline for it to address EU anti-trust concerns.
The case relates to EU charges that Intel paid a retailer to refrain from selling computers using chips made by a rival.
“The application for interim relief is dismissed,” the Court of First Instance court said in a statement.
In Brussels, the European Commission immediately welcomed the decision of the court, while in California Intel said it was disappointed and was considering its options.
The European Commission issued charges against Intel in July, alleging that the company had paid a retailer to favor computers using its chips over those using chips from rival Advanced Micro Devices AMD.N.
It had set Intel an Oct.17 deadline to respond to its concerns, a delay which Intel has missed. Intel had filed an appeal in October with the Court of First Instance in Luxembourg.
“The Commission is pleased that the CFI (Court of First Instance) President has confirmed that the Commission’s antitrust investigation should not be suspended,” the EU executive said in a statement on the ruling.
“The Commission’s investigation remains ongoing,” the statement said. “The Commission cannot comment on the specific steps in the investigation that the Commission may now take.”
Intel spokesman Chuck Mulloy said at the company’s headquarters in California: “We’re disappointed. Certainly we’re considering our options.”
“We continue to be concerned about the lack of certain documents in the case file that would help us conduct an effective defense.
Mulloy noted that the court suggested that the EU Commission was free to decide itself whether it wanted to grant Intel a 30-day extension to file its response.
Reporting by Ingrid Melander and Mark John in Brussels and David Lawsky in San Francisco; writing by Ingrid Melander; editing by Elaine Hardcastle
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