The Court of Appeal of England and Wales rules that the making of a disclosure order against a French litigant is in the English Court’s discretion, and is not precluded by French Law No. 68-678 or the Council Regulation No 1206/2001 (National Grid Electricity Transmission / ABB)

Curtains for the French Blocking Statute?* Never the most celebrated actor on the stage of English litigation, the French Blocking Statute nonetheless has its fans, particularly among competition lawyers. The recent decision of the Court of Appeal in Secretary of State for Health v Servier Laboratories [2013] EWCA Civ 1234, however, may prove the Statute’s final curtain call in this jurisdiction. Law No. 68-678 of the French Republic, to give the Statute its proper name, was originally enacted in response to a United States antitrust investigation into French shipping companies. By 1980, the heat of US antitrust scrutiny was on French aviation: two Air France executives had been interrogated in the US; a passenger had started private antitrust proceedings against Air France in the US

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  • Blackstone Chambers (London)

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Tom Richards, The Court of Appeal of England and Wales rules that the making of a disclosure order against a French litigant is in the English Court’s discretion, and is not precluded by French Law No. 68-678 or the Council Regulation No 1206/2001 (National Grid Electricity Transmission / ABB), 22 October 2013, e-Competitions Bulletin Burden of proof, Art. N° 59288

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