Standards lie at the heart of the digital economy – without standards, we would not have smartphones, tablets and other key parts of modern life. Europe’s highest court recently delivered a judgment in Huawei v. ZTE[1] explaining when EU competition law will prevent holders of patents that are essential to comply with a standard (SEPs)…

On 9 July 2015, the Court of Justice of the European Union (“ECJ”) issued an important judgment[1] concerning the basis on which cartel fines by the European Commission should be calculated for vertically integrated companies. The judgment endorses the power of the European Commission to impose large fines on multinational companies operating at various levels…

The Court of Justice of the European Union has now delivered its judgment in the Deutsche Bahn1 case. This case concerns important practical principles which govern the conduct of European Commission dawn raids (on-the-spot surprise inspections used to investigate possible infringements of the EU competition rules). In particular, the case focusses on what inspectors can…

On 20 April 2015, the Dutch competition authority ACM published Guidelines on its enforcement priorities with respect to vertical restraints.  The document contains a number of case studies intended to illustrate the types of cases that the ACM would or would not consider priorities for its enforcement.  One case study is closely modelled on the…

In January 2015 the European Commission announced its intention to appeal a judgment of the Belgian Commercial Court which dismissed the Commission’s claim for €6 million of damages against Otis, KONE, Schindler and ThyssenKrupp. The Court’s decision illuminates the importance of changes brought about by the recently implemented Damages Directive. Background On 27 February 2007…

It is not uncommon, where a multi-party infringement of competition law has been established and sanctioned by a competition authority for some, but not all, of the addressees of the authority’s decision to appeal that decision.  Those appeals can be against the finding of infringement, whether in whole or part, and/or the penalty imposed.  Where…

Earlier this month, Advocate General Wahl delivered his opinion in the Deutsche Bahn[1] case. This case concerns important practical principles which govern the conduct of European Commission dawn raids (on-the-spot surprise inspections used to investigate possible infringements of the EU competition rules). In particular, the case focusses on what inspectors can do with documents that…

The Canadian government is determined to remedy what it (and many Canadians) regard as an unjustified gap between US and Canadian prices for the same goods. In particular, the government has focused on what it perceives to be unjustified “country pricing” or “cross-border price discrimination”, ie, businesses charging more for goods sold in Canada than…

Last week, the Council gave itself another shot at improving the functioning of the General Court of the European Union (the ‘General Court’). And once again, it failed. Following an already disappointing episode in March 2014,[1] the Council again placed the equality between member states at the top of its priorities, by doubling up the number…

Two unusual features of the United Kingdom’s merger control regime are that notification is voluntary and there is no ‘suspension’ obligation. This means that mergers can be – and routinely are – completed without notification to and/or approval by the Competition and Markets Authority (“CMA”). In this article, I examine the CMA’s use of its…