Notion of dominance

Dominance

The evolving notion of dominance in competition law: An overview of recent decisions at the national levels
Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom (Brussels)
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Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom (Brussels)
Introduction A review of the Article 102 TFEU decisions at the member state level in the last years shows that the challenges of applying competition law rules in the digital economy or in relation to patent rights have not been reserved exclusively for the EU Commission. The EU Commission has (...)

The French Competition Authority receives commitments from an online hotel booking company aiming at ending practices likely to constitute an abuse of dominance (Booking.com)
French Competition Authority (Paris)
Online hotel booking sector* Booking.com has proposed to the Autorité de la concurrence to remove the so-called “pricing parity clause” obliging hotels to grant it pricing conditions that are at least as favorable as those granted to the other online platforms Hotels can now place booking.com in (...)

Advocate General Whatelet holds that the fact that a company owns a standard-essential patent does not necessarily mean that it holds a dominant position (Huawei / ZTE)
AnJie Law (Beijing)
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AnJie Law (Beijing)
Huawei vs. ZTE - The Advocate General Has Spoken* Background On April 5, 2013, the Landgericht Düsseldorf (a German regional court) referred a set of questions relating to injunctive relief over standard-essential patents (“SEPs”) to the European Court of Justice (“ECJ”) in connection with a (...)

The Lithuanian Competition Council finds that the difference between the terms and conditions of channel distribution rights sold to analogue and digital television providers does not impede competition or significantly influence consumer welfare (Viasat World)
Lithuanian Competition Authority (Vilnius)
Competition Council: Viasat conduct does not impede competition* Competition Council (KT) terminated investigation into suspected abuse of dominance by Viasat World Limited and Viasat AS. The KT held that the actions carried out by the companies influence neither effective competition nor (...)

The EU General Court upholds the Commission’s decision finding that it had correctly demonstrated the anti-competitive nature of the exclusivity rebates granted by global manufacturer of computer processors (Intel)
DLA Piper Weiss-Tessbach (Vienna)
General Court upholds the EU Commission’s decision against Intel* On 12 June 2014 the General Court published its decision in the Intel case thereby upholding the Commission’s 2009 decision finding that Intel had abused its dominant position and imposed a fine of EUR 1.06 billion. On 13 May (...)

The EU General Court upholds the European Commission’s decision regarding exclusivity rebates on the microprocessor market (Intel)
Dentons (Brussels)
Introduction On 12 June 2014 the General Court issued a judgment upholding in its entirety the European Commission’s decision of 13 May 2009 imposing a fine of €1.06 billion on Intel for abusing its dominant position in the market for x86 central processing units ("CPUs"). In its ruling on the (...)

The EU General Court provides an in-depth analysis of the anti-competitive character of the matter of exclusivity rebates offered to the OEM partners (Intel)
EFTA Surveillance Authority
Case T-286/09 Intel : Characterisation of rebates* It is time to get deeper into the frenzy of the judgment in Case T-286/09 Intel which we summarised very quickly here in our first post on the case. Let us start by looking at the characterisation of rebate schemes by the General Court. The (...)

The EU General Court holds that the exclusivity rebates by their nature are capable of restricting competition and foreclosing competitors from the market for computer processors (Intel)
EFTA Surveillance Authority
Case T-286/09 Intel v Commission: Exclusivity rebates and abuse of a dominant position* Right then, folks, brace yourselves…. The much awaited judgment of the General Court in Case T-286/09 Intel v Commission EU:T:2014:472 came out today. It’s a whopper ! 255 pages. Summarising it is reminds me (...)

The EU General Court holds that a duty to procure specific documents might be imposed on the Commission at the request of an undertaking which is the subject to an antitrust investigation under certain circumstances (Intel)
Mircea & Partners (Bucharest)
Access to documents not to be found in the Commission’s possession I. Background The Intel Cases have occupied the international arena of antitrust litigation for the past ten years and a definitive resolution has not been reached yet. The administrative proceeding initiated by the Commission (...)

The General Court upholds in its entirety the European Commission’s decision imposing a fine on a microprocessor manufacturer for abusing a dominant position in the market for desktop and laptop microprocessors (Intel)
Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom (Brussels)
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Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom (Brussels)
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Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom (Brussels)
In a long-awaited judgment issued on June 12, 2014, the General Court upheld in its entirety the European Commission’s May 13, 2009, decision imposing a fine of €1.06 billion ($1.5 billion) on Intel for abusing a dominant position in the market for x86 CPUs. In particular, the court upheld the (...)

The EU General Court upholds the Commission decision in consideration of two exclusionary practices on the market for supply of CPUs, opening the door to a further appeal to the CJEU and to a possible application before the ECtHR (Intel)
European Procurement Law Group
Could Intel challenge its 1bn Euro fine on grounds of ’corporate human rights’* After last week’s General Court Judgment in Intel v Commission, T-286/09, EU:T:2014:475, the 2 month period for Intel to appeal the confirmation of its 1bn Euro fine before the Court of Justice of the EU on points of (...)

The EU Commission finds that the order sought and the enforcement of an injunction before a German Court on the basis of a smartphone standard essential patent constituted abuse of dominance (Motorola Mobility)
Stanford University - Stanford Law School
European Commission finds that Motorola Mobility misused standard essential patents* On 29 April 2014, the European Commission European held that it has adopted a decision which found that Motorola Mobility’s (“Motorola”) seeking and enforcement of an injunction against Apple before a German (...)

The Italian Competition Authority investigates into a foreclosing conduct of the manager of Milan airports in the general aviation sector (Cedicor/SEA)
Desogus Law Office (Cagliari)
Introduction By a decision made on 20 December 2013 the Italian Competition Authority (ICA) has opened an Article 102 investigation against the manager of the Milan airports, SEA (Case A474, Cedicor/SEA). SEA was alleged to have abused its dominant position by foreclosing the market for the (...)

The Competition Commission of India orders investigation against Swedish telecom provider for abusing its dominant position in determining royalty under FRAND terms (Micromax Informatics Limited / Telefonaktiebolaget LM Ericsson)
University of Tilburg - Center for Law and Economics (TILEC)
Background In a recent matter, Micromax Informatics Limited vs Telefonaktiebolaget LM Ericsson (Publ), the Competition Commission of India has ordered an investigation by DG competition against Ericsson for abusing its dominant position in determining royalty under the FRAND terms. Micromax in (...)

The French Competition Authority launches a public consultation on commitments received in by a major operator in online gambling sector (PMU)
University Dublin College (UCD)
The French Competition Authority launched a public consultation on commitments it received from an operator in a dominant position on the online gambling market to split its online betting activities from those of its shop-betting network. Following a complaint from the Betclic Everest Group (...)

The Czech Office for the Protection of Competition imposes fines for abuse of significant market power on the retail market for agricultural and food products (Kaufland)
BPV Braun Partners
Food Retailers in the Czech Republic, Be Aware!* The so-called Act on Significant Market Power for the Sale of Agricultural and Food Products and the Abuse thereof (No. 359/2009 Coll.) had effect from 1 February 2010. In October 2013, internal appeal procedures ended with the first significant (...)

The EU Commission consults on commitments to close UMTS standards essential patents investigation (Samsung)
Stanford University - Stanford Law School
European Commission tests Samsung’s proposed commitments to close UMTS standards essential patents investigation* Last 17 October 2013, the European Commission advised (see also here) that it is testing the commitments Samsung offered in connection with investigations into the alleged abuse of (...)

The EU Court of Justice maintains the validity of the Commission decision not to investigate the complaint due to the low likelihood of establishing a dominant position of printer manufacturers on ink cartridge aftermarket (EFIM/Commission)
University of Amsterdam
The EFIM-case: no dominant position of printer manufacturers on ink cartridge aftermarket* Ink in cartridges for printers is often called ‘black gold’, or qualified as the ‘most expensive liquid in the world’. Manufacturers of printers sell their ink cartridges at (relatively) high prices, whereas (...)

The German Competition Authority issues a statement of objections against a dominant retailer for abusive practices against economically dependent suppliers on the market for sales of sparkling wine (EDEKA)
German Competition Authority (Bonn)
Statement of objections issued against EDEKA for use of "wedding rebates" after Plus takeover - Bundeskartellamt considers demands on suppliers as abusive* Bonn, 26 July 2013: According to the Bundeskartellamt’s preliminary assessment, EDEKA Zentrale AG & Co.KG, Hamburg, has violated the (...)

The Portuguese Supreme Court clarifies the conditions regarding the existence of an abuse of economic dependence (Toyota Portugal)
Sérvulo & Associados
The recent Toyota Portugal judgment of the Supreme Court of Justice (Supremo Tribunal de Justiça) provides a clear-cut opportunity to, even briefly, examine the current stances on the abuse of economic dependency (also known as relative dominance), i.e., the practice where one undertaking (...)

The Italian Court of Milan finds an abuse of dominant position in the market for online travel agencies (Viaggiare/Ryanair)
Stanford University - Stanford Law School
Milan Court finds that Ryanair abused its dominant position in the market for online travel agencies* On June 4, 2013, the Milan Court’s company law section handed down a ruling (only available in Italian) holding that Ryanair abused its dominant position in the downstream market for online (...)

The European Commission carries out a market test of commitments in its investigation of online search service provider (Google)
Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton (Brussels)
The Google Commitments – Testing Substantive Theories Through Remedy Discussion* Over the last two months, the Commission has been market testing commitments that Google has offered to resolve the Commission’s pending investigation. Many have made thoughtful comments. But there has also been (...)

The EU Commission receives a complaint alleging abuse of dominant position on the market for smartphone operating system (FairSearch/Google)
Garrigues (Brussels)
Some thoughts on the new anti-Google (Android) complaint* Some background to the complaint Back in April the FairSearch coalition in this case only two of its members Microsoft and Nokia lodged a complaint with DG Comp alleging: (a) that by giving Android to device-makers for “free” Google (...)

The Italian Council of State rules on the issue of dominant firms’ duty to supply essential information beyond the requirements of sector regulation (BCS)
University of Naples "Federico II"
Italy’s highest administrative court handed down an important ruling on the issue of the dominant firms’ duty under Article 102 TFEU to grant their competitors access to essential information when sector regulation encourages such a disclosure. By its judgment of 11 January 2013, no. 548 (the (...)

The ECJ dismisses pharmaceutical company’s appeal against Commission and EU General Court’s findings that it abused its dominant position by misusing patent systems and pharmaceutical marketing procedures in order to exclude generic competitors from the market and to restrict parallel imports (AstraZeneca)
Herbert Smith Freehills (Brussels)
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Herbert Smith Freehills (London)
1. Introduction The Court of Justice of the EU (ECJ) has dismissed AstraZeneca’s appeal against the Commission’s and General Court’s findings that the company abused its dominant position under Article 102 TFEU by misusing the patent system and pharmaceutical marketing procedures in order to (...)

The Belgian Competition Council’s College of Prosecutors dismisses complaints against telecom operator for abusing its dominant position in the market for fixed telephony, due to margin squeeze on its "Happy Time offer" (Tele2 / Belgacom)
Liège University - IEJE
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Altius (Brussels)
I. The Parties Belgacom S.A. is the incumbent operator on the Belgian telecom market and former historical operator. In 2005, Tele2 was a 100% subsidiary of a Swedish company. In the meantime, this company was sold to KPN, a Dutch company, in 2007. II. The Facts Access to the telecommunication (...)

The French Competition Authority accepts commitments proposed by editor of printed and online directories and puts an end to its investigations in the market of sale of advertising space in those directories (PagesJaunes)
White & Case (Paris)
In a decision issued on November 22, 2012, the French Competition Authority (hereafter “the FCA”) accepted the commitments proposed by PagesJaunes SA, thereby putting an end to a procedure following complaints for abuse of dominant position, without imposing any fine. PagesJaunes is the leader (...)

The Romanian Competition Authority finds no abuse of dominance in the absence of economic dependence in the bulk handling terminal services market (Comvex, Arcelor Mittal)
University of Technology (Tallinn)
On 22 June 2012 the Romanian Competition Authority (CC) concluded its investigation into the alleged abuse of dominant position on the bulk hanlding terminal services market. In the absence of the clearly defined situation of economic dependence between the parties and in the view of the (...)

The Paris Commercial Court finds that leading internet search company abused its dominant position on the maps market (Bottin Cartographes / Google)
Google (Paris)
Facts Is free an anticompetitive behavior? Bottin Cartographes, a French company which offers solutions to firms which want to integrate maps in their websites, realized that it was losing clients to Google. Its clients, which used to pay for the display on their pages of their location and (...)

The Swiss Supreme Court upholds the annulment of the record fine on the historical telecom operator for excessive pricing in mobile termination fees (Swisscom / Comco)
Swiss Competition Commission
On 11th April 2011, the Swiss Supreme Court rendered its long-awaited decision in the mobile termination fees case about an alleged abuse of dominance of Swisscom, the Swiss historical telecom operator. In 2007, the Swiss Competition Commission (Comco) has imposed a record fine of over 200 (...)

The European Commission opens in-depth investigation over alleged antitrust violations in on-line search market (Microsoft, Google)
Wolters Kluwer (Riverwoods)
Microsoft Files Antitrust Complaint with European Commission Against Google* Microsoft Corporation has filed a formal complaint with the European Commission (EC) against Google Inc. as part of the EC’s ongoing antitrust investigation into the search engine company. In a March 30 blog post, Brad (...)

The Polish Competition Authority accepts commitments from the authors’ association concerning copyrights management agreements under Polish and EU competition law (ZAiKS)
WilmerHale (Brussels)
Market structure and dominant position ZAiKS is the largest association of authors and composers in Poland and the sole active on the market for collective management of copyrights for vocal and musical works. This market was considered by the Polish Office of Competition and Consumer (...)

The Japan Fair Trade Commission issues draft guidelines on the prohibition of abuse of a superior bargaining position under the Anti-Monopoly Law (AML)
Winston & Strawn (New York)
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Jones Day (Tokyo)
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Jones Day (Tokyo)
The Japan Fair Trade Commission (JFTC) has issued draft guidelines on enforcement of the prohibition on abuse of a superior bargaining position, which long has been a violation of Japan’s « Anti-Monopoly Law » (AML) and has been enforced mostly through the Japanese administrative guidance system. (...)

The European Commission recognises that due to their dynamics internet markets such as online search engines are characterized by innovative business models that are constantly evolving and therefore market dominance on the internet might be difficult to establish (Google)
Sheppard Mullin (Del Mar)
EC Investigates Google for Potential Abuse of Dominance in Online Search Market* In July 2010, Vice President of the European Commission (EC) responsible for competition policy, Mr. Joaquin Almunia, referred to the essential role that competition policy has in ensuring “market access and (...)

The EU General Court upholds “novel” approach to abuse of dominance in pivotal pharma appeal (AstraZeneca)
Linklaters (Brussels)
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Linklaters (Brussels)
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Linklaters (Brussels)
On July 1, 2010, the General Court ruled in an appeal against the European Commission’s first ever finding of abuse of a dominant position by a pharma company. The Court has broadly upheld a Decision the Commission itself characterised as “novel”, but reduced the €60 million fine on AstraZeneca to (...)

The EU General Court fines a company for abuse of a dominant position in the pharmaceutical sector addressing the issues of market definition and dominance analysis (AstraZeneca)
Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton (Brussels)
The General Court’s Judgment In AstraZeneca, Lessons For Market Definition And Dominance Analysis* On July 1, 2010, the European General Court rendered its judgment in the AstraZeneca case, dismissing for the most part AstraZeneca’s appeal against the Commission’s infringement decision of June (...)

The Hungarian Competition Council accepts commitments to remedy a suspected abuse of dominant position concerning the pricing of mortgages vis-à-vis "captured consumers"
Ernst & Young
The Hungarian Competition Council adopted a commitment decision terminating an investigation relating to the suspected abuse of dominant position by one of the leading banks in Hungary offering personal banking services, including housing loans (mortgages). The investigation was triggered by (...)

The Spanish Supreme Court holds that the national High Court erred in law as regard the concept of dominance (Enagás, Gas Natural Comercializadora)
European Commission - DG COMP (Brussels)
On November 22, 2002, the National Energy Agency (Comisión Nacional de la Energía) sent a letter of complaint to the Service of Competition Defense (Servicio de Defensa de la Competencia) related to the contract signed on July 27, 2001 between Enagás, SA and Gas Natural Comercializadora, at that (...)

The Hellenic Competition Commission concludes that a joint purchase agreement between refineries does not restrict competition (Hellenic Petroleum and Motor Oil Hellas)
OECD - Competition Division (Paris)
On 23 March 2010, the Hellenic Competition Commission («HCC») concluded an own-initiative investigation with a ruling that the joint purchase agreement between Hellenic Petroleum («ELPE») and Motor Oil Hellas in relation to the operation of a pipeline to the Athens International Airport does not (...)

The Turkish Competition Authority closes investigation into a state-owned intercity coach station for refusing to allocate a slot to a private coach company (KISOT)
University of Sussex
This study analyses the decision of the Turkish Competition Authority (TCA) in which it has closed its abuse of dominance investigation into the state-owned Kirikkale intercity coach station (KISOT) after six months from its previous cease-and-desist order to halt potentially abusive refusal to (...)

The Belgian Competition Council rejects a complaint of abuse of dominance in the beer distribution sector (Inbev)
Liège University - IEJE
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KBC Assurance
1. The Parties The plaintiffs in this case are, on the one hand, the Flanders and Walloon HORECA (that is the Federation of Hotels, restaurant and catering professionals) and, on the other hand, several bars owners. The action is brought against Inbev Belgium plc (“Inbev”), a subsidiary of (...)

The Belgian Competition Prosecutor dismisses a claim from the Union of Belgian French-speaking Booksellers against their main distributors concerning alleged illicit agreement and abuse of dominant position (Interforum)
Philippe & Partners (Brussels)
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Liège University - IEJE
I. The parties The complaint was launched by the “Belgian Union of French-speaking Booksellers” (hereinafter UBFB), whose task is "to ensure the preservation and advancement of the interests of booksellers; safeguard, foster and promote by all means the dissemination of books; ensure the (...)

The Belgian Competition Prosecutor dismisses a complaint from the Union of Belgian French-speaking Booksellers alleging an abuse of dominance and the existence of a cartel between two book distributors (Dilibel)
Philippe & Partners (Brussels)
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Griffes Consulting
1. The parties The “Union of Belgian French-speaking Booksellers” (hereinafter “UBFB”) is a non-profit organization which represents and defends the interests of the Belgian French-speaking booksellers. It represents 60% of French-speaking booksellers of Belgium. Dilibel Plc. is a subsidiary of (...)

The EU Commission publishes a non-confidential version of its decision on abuse of dominance in the x86 CPU market (Intel)
Stanford University - Stanford Law School
Commission publishes non-confidential version of its decision on Intel’s abuse of dominance in the x86 CPU market* On 21 September 2009, the Commission published a non-confidential version of its Intel decision, adopted on 13 May 2009, together with a summary of the key elements of the (...)

The US DOJ formally withdraws its report on abuse of dominance (Single-Firm Conduct under S. 2 of the Sherman Act)
White & Case (Washington)
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White & Case (New York)
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White & Case
Background On May 11, 2009, the Antitrust Division of the Department of Justice (“DOJ”) formally changed its position on the agency’s role in the enforcement of the antitrust laws against monopolists. In a speech by new Assistant Attorney General Christine A. Varney and a press release issued (...)

The Italian Competition Authority opens an investigations for violation of Art. 82 EC in the plasterboard market (Saint-Gobain)
Ashurst
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Legance - Studio Legale Associato
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Banca d’Italia (Italian Central Bank)
Background On 5 March 2009, the Italian Competition Authority (Autorità Garante della Concorrenza e del Mercato, “AGCM”) launched an investigation for possible violation of Article 82 EC and Article 3 of Law 10 October 1990 n° 287 (corresponding to Article 82 EC) by Saint-Gobain Ppc Italia S.p.A. (...)

The French Competition Council hands out two key decisions in relation to the concept of abuse of state of economic dependence (Concurrence - National union of the written press distributors SNDP)
Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer (Paris)
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Lni avocats (Paris)
A provision specific to French competition law In France, in addition to the prohibition against the abuse of a dominant position, national competition law prohibits the abusive exploitation by a company or a group of companies (not necessarily dominant) of a situation of economic dependence (...)

The Portuguese competition authority suspends promotional TV campaign of multimedia operator on the basis of alleged abuse of dominant position (ZON Multimédia)
Sérvulo & Associados
Last January 6th, 2009, the Portuguese Competition Authority (Autoridade da Concorrência - “AdC”) announced that it has ordered the telecoms operator ZON Multimédia to suspend a promotional campaign involving the attribution to its cable TV clients (of ZON/TV Cabo) of a fidelity card conferring the (...)

The Cypriot Commission for the Protection of Competition holds the telecommunications to have abused its dominant position in the SMS market (Thunderworx / Cyprus Telecommunications Authority)
Antoniou Advocates
By its decision 132/2008 ("the Decision") and acting on the basis of an official complaint submitted by Thunderworx Ltd ("Thunderworx") against the Cyprus Telecommunications Authority ("CYTA"), the Cyprus Commission for the Protection of Competition ("CPC") found the latter party to have (...)

The Italian Competition Authority holds that airports abused their dominant position by setting excessive fees (Aeroporti di Milano)
Desogus Law Office (Cagliari)
The Italian Competition Authority (ICA) has ruled that SEA, the manager of the Milan airports of Linate and Malpensa breached Art. 82 EC and imposed on it a fine of € 1,549,000 . SEA abused its dominant position it enjoyed at the airports of Linate and Malpensa as holder of an exclusive licence (...)

The Lazio Regional Administrative Tribunal upholds a Competition Authority’s decision finding that mobile phone operators do not hold a collective dominant position in the market for access to mobile phone network (Eutelia)
Latham & Watkins (Brussels)
Introduction The Regional Administrative Tribunal of Latium, Rome office, First Chamber (“TAR Latium”) by a judgment of 31 December 2008, has upheld a decision of the Italian Antitrust Authority (“IAA”) finding that the Mobile Network Operators (“MNOs”) TIM, Vodafone and Wind do not hold a (...)

The Spanish Competition Authority dismisses a complaint against a car insurance company for abuse of a dominant position (AXA)
European Court of Justice (Luxembourg)
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Garrigues
The decision-making body of the Spanish Competition Authority (Consejo Nacional de la Competencia , hereinafter the CNC) recently took a decision bringing to an end an investigation against the insurance company Axa for an alleged abuse of a dominant position within the Spanish car insurance (...)

The Polish Supreme Court issues a leading ruling defining the concept of abuse of a dominant position ("Water supply and sewage disposal services" case)
Hogan Lovells (Warsaw)
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PKN Orlen
On 16 October 2008, the Polish Supreme Court issued a decision clearly defining the concept of abuse of a dominant position by imposing unfair contractual conditions. The main legal points concerned the ability to act independently as an element of the definition of a dominant position. The (...)

The Maltese Commission for Fair Trading condemns the transport regulator’s unfairly discriminatory treatment against open top buses operator (Spiteri - Garden of Eden/Malta Transport Authority)
Garden of Eden is a Maltese commercial undertaking operating in the public and private transport markets in Malta. It was originally owned and operated by Mr. Angelo Spiteri. Following the latter’s death, applicants inherited this business concern and continued in its operation. In 1993, Angelo (...)

The Antwerp Commercial Court considers prices that do not comply with regulatory pricing obligations to be excessive under Belgian competition law (Base / Belgacom)
Arendt & Medernach (Luxembourg)
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NautaDutilh (Luxembourg)
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ID4green
Facts of the case 1. In 2007, a dispute arose between Base, one of the three main mobile telephone operators in Belgium, and Belgacom, the Belgian incumbent on the fixed telephone market. In a decision of 11 August 2006, the Institut belge des services postaux et des télécommunications (IBPT ), (...)

The Austrian Supreme Court once again finds that an integrated film distributor and cinema operator abused its dominant position by refusing to supply copies of its films to rival cinema operators (Constantin-Film)
Reidlinger Schatzmann Rechtsanwälte
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Bpv Hügel (Vienna)
This case is the latest instalment in a series of claims for refusal to deal brought by Austrian cinema operators against Constantin-Film, a company active in Austria both as a distributor of cinema films and as an operator of a large number of cinemas. Like the previous decisions against (...)

The Hungarian Competition Office refuses to hold abusive the postal incumbent’s conduct due to the lack of palpable market effects (Magyar Posta)
Hungarian Competition Law Research Centre
The Hungarian Competition Office refused to condemn the defendant’s conduct in a dominant position case due to the lack of palpable market effects. The behaviour would have admittedly amounted to an abuse in case of perceptible market consequences. However, in the absence of such impairment to (...)

The French Supreme Court questions allocation of costs in a predatory pricing Case (Vedettes inter-îles vendéennes)
Kramer Levin Naftalis & Frankel (Paris)
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Eversheds Sutherland (Paris)
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Eversheds Sutherland (Paris)
1. Facts and ruling The Régie départementale des passages d’eau de la Vendée (RDPEV) is the provider of a public service : it operates year-round in any weather daily ferry services for passengers, cargo and vehicles between the mainland and l’île d’Yeu. For this purpose, RDPEV uses three vessels : (...)

The Maltese Commission for Fair Trading strikes down finding of abuse of dominance in the market of cereals while briefly reviewing State aids issue (Federated Mills)
Federated Mills plc, an undertaking importing wheat, and selling processed flour to retailers in Malta, requested the Director of the Office for Fair Trading (hereinafter referred to as ‘the Director), to submit for review to the Commission for Fair Trading (hereinafter referred to as ‘the (...)

The German Federal Court of Justice confirms decision on infringement of Article 82 EC by a manufacturer of home soda makers (Soda Club II)
Blomstein
Background In February 2006, the German Federal Cartel Office (FCO) found that Soda Club, a manufacturer of home soda makers, had abused its dominant position by requiring customers and dealers to have the carbon dioxide cartridges used in the soda makers refilled solely by Soda Club. The (...)

The Cyprus Supreme Court annuls on procedural grounds the Competition Authority’s decision having fined € 3.8 M the telecommunications incumbent for abusive roaming prices in the mobile telecommunications market (Areeba / CYTA)
Antoniou Advocates
In Case n° 634/2006, Areeba Ltd v. Commission for the Protection of Competition, the Supreme Court of Cyprus, in exercising its exclusive jurisdiction to review any decision, act or omission of any person, organ or authority exercising executive or administrative authority, annulled a Decision (...)

The Bulgarian Supreme Administrative Court upholds the Competition Authority’s decision sanctioning the telecom incumbent for exerting margin squeeze on its competitors in the markets for fixed telephone services (BTC / CPC)
Kinstellar (Sofia)
On 9 January 2008, the Supreme Administrative Court (the “SAC”) handed down a final judgment. in a dispute between the local telecom incumbent - Bulgarian Telecommunication Company AD (“BTC”) and the Bulgarian Commission for Protection of Competition (the “CPC”) concerning an alleged margin squeeze (...)

The Polish Competition Authority fines the largest telecom operator a record fine of € 20 M for abusing its dominant position on the Internet access market (Telekomunikacja Polska)
Allen & Overy (Warsaw)
On 20 December 2007 the President of the Polish Office for Competition and Consumer Protection (OCCP) issued a decision imposing a fine of PLN 75 million (approximately EUR 20 million) on Telekomunikacja Polska S.A. (TPSA), the incumbent telecom operator in Poland, for abusing its dominant (...)

The Brussels Court of Appeal annuls the interim decision of the President of the Competition Council on the telecom incumbent’s bundled tariffs (Belgacom)
Oracle (Brussels)
Background information Belgacom used to be the autonomous public-sector company that ruled the government monopoly in telecommunications. This was the case until 1994, when the company changed into a “société anonyme”, and the liberalization of the telecom sector was initiated (which was fully (...)

The French Competition Council renders a landmark interim decision on competition between princeps and generics (Arrow / Schering-Plough)
Fréget - Tasso de Panafieu Avocats (Paris)
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Novartis (Basel)
By a decision of 11 December 2007, the Competition Council issued yet another decision concerning the (difficult) competition between princeps and generics at the time when the latter enter a market which becomes accessible upon expiry of the former’s intellectual property rights. Although this (...)

The Swedish Market Court holds that the electricity network for municipalities street and road lighting is not an essential facility and rejects alleged abusive refusal to supply and price increase (Ekfors)
Swedavia AB
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White & Case (Stockholm)
In 2006, two Swedish municipalities (Haparanda and Övertorneå kommun, hereinafter referred to as the “Municipalities” ) filed a complaint to the Swedish Competition Authority (“SCA”), accusing a number of electricity companies (“Ekforsbolagen”) of abusing their dominant position by refusing to supply (...)

A Lithuanian Court reopens the "Gas saga" by sending alleged abuse of dominance of the gas supplier incumbent back to the NCA for reinvestigation (Akmenes energij/Lietuvos dujos)
Lithuanian Competition Council
On 7 November 2007, the Vilnius District Administrative Court (VDAC) ordered the Competition Council to reinvestigate the earlier closed case of the suspected Article 9 (equivalent to Article 82 EC) infringement by AB Lietuvos dujos (LD), a natural gas supplier. The Court’s judgment represents (...)

The German Federal Cartel Office defines the criteria of “not merely occasionally” in respect of selling below cost prices as an abuse of superior market power (Netto)
Hengeler Mueller (Dusseldorf)
I. Background The decision of the FCO is based on Sec. 20 (4) German Act against Restraints of Competition (ARC). At the time of the decision, on 25 October 2007, the provision prohibited undertakings with superior market power in relation to small and medium-sized competitors to use their (...)

A Czech Court quashes the NCA decision having imposed the highest fine ever to a single undertaking for anti-competitive practices on the natural gas wholesale market (RWE Transgas)
Gide Loyrette Nouel
On 22 October 2007 the Regional Court in Brno quashed the second instance decision of the Czech Office for Protection of Competition (the “Office”) in the case of RWE Transgas a.s. (“RWE Transgas”), after RWE Transgas challenged the Office’s decision by an action at the court. The Office imposed on (...)

The Dutch Competition Authority dismisses complaint lodged by a consumers’ association against leading software company for alleged abuse of dominance on the markets for portable music players and online music stores concluding the absence of tying (Apple)
The AES Corporation
In January 2007 the Dutch consumers’ association (Consumentenbond) lodged a complaint with the Dutch Competition Authority (NMa) against Apple Computer Benelux BV (Apple). The Consumentenbond claimed that Apple has a dominant position on the market for portable music players through its (...)

The Lisbon Court of Commerce quashes the Competition Authority’s first ever abuse of dominant position infringement decision in the underground ducts’ telecom network access case, upheld on appeal (PT Comunicações)
European Court of Justice (Luxembourg)
I. The case, the PCA’s decision and the judgments After receiving complaints from telecom undertakings “TvTel Comunicações” and “Cabovisão”, the Portuguese Competition Authority (hereinafter “PCA”) launched an investigation in 2003 into the allegations that Portugal Telecom Comunicações (hereinafter (...)

A Dutch Court annuls a decision of the NCA on alleged abusive rebates scheme for insufficient analysis of the effects of the practice (CRV Holding)
Government of Albania
The appellant, CRV Holding B.V. (hereafter CRV) appealed to the District Court of Rotterdam against Decision n° 3353 taken by the Dutch Competition Authority (hereafter DCA) on 31 December 2003. The decision was taken under Section 24 paragraph 1 of the Dutch Competition Act 1998 which (...)

The Austrian competition authority concludes general inquiry in the highly concentrated food distribution sector while highlighting indications of strong buyer power (Branchenuntersuchung Lebensmittelhandel)
European Court of Justice (Luxembourg)
In June 2007, the Austrian competition authority (Bundeswettbewerbsbehörde; “BWB”) published its final report on a general inquiry conducted in respect of the Austrian food wholesale and retail distribution sector with special regard to the phenomenon of buying power (“Nachfragemacht”) exerted by (...)

The Brussels Court of Appeal confirms that a non compete clause does not constitute a restrictive agreement but may constitute an abuse of dominance (FEBIAC/WEX)
Liège University - IEJE
,
Minnen & Peysmans-De Rick
I. Parties FEBIAC is a non-profit organisation which represents all motorcar designers, importers and suppliers in Belgium. Wallonie Expo (“WEX”) is the owner of an exhibition infrastructure. UPTR is a professional association of road transport companies. II. Facts In January 2005, FEBIAC (...)

The UK High Court of Justice rejects a claim of predatory behaviour on a local bus transport services market (Chester City Transport v. Arriva)
King’s College (London)
Introduction and Background to the Claim In Chester City Council and Chester City Transport Limited v. Arriva Plc, Arriva Cymru Limited and Arriva North West Limited [2007] EWHC 1373 (Ch), the High Court of Justice had to consider a claim brought by Chester City Council (‘the Council’) and (...)

The UK Office of Communications dismisses a complaint based, inter alia on Art. 81 and 82 EC, on alleged anticompetitive agreement and abuse of dominant position of the public broadcaster for having entered into an exclusive agreement for television access services (BBC / Channel 4)
Paul Hastings (London)
The decision of OFCOM regarding case CW/00842/06/05 concluded that BBC Broadcast Limited (“BBC Broadcast”) did not infringe the Chapter I prohibition of the Competition Act 1998 (the “Act”) or Article 81(1) of the EC Treaty in relation to an exclusive agreement with Channel 4 Television (...)

The Irish Supreme Court allows an appeal against the High Court’s finding of an abuse of dominance in the market for life insurance (Irish League of Credit unions)
London School of Economics
The present case is the first appeal against a High Court decision on substantive competition law matters to come before the Irish Supreme Court. The plaintiff in this case, the National Competition Authority (NCA), initiated this action before the High Court in accordance with the powers (...)

The Russian Competition Authority imposes a fine of € 35 M for excessive pricing in the potassium chloride market (Silvinit / Uralkalii)
Gibson Dunn
On 23 April 2007, the Russian Federal Antimonopoly Service ("FAS Russia") decided that the two only Russian producers of potassium chloride, Silvinit and Uralkalii, were in breach of Article 10(1) of the Russian Federal Law on the Protection of Competition by abusing their dominant position. (...)

The Spanish Audiencia Nacional annuls the Competition Authority’s decision fining a natural gas supplier on the basis of Art. 82 EC for impeding third parties access to regasification capacities (Gas Natural)
Introduction On June 2006, the Tribunal de Defensa de la Competencia - TDC - (the second-tier competition authority) imposed a hefty fine of 8 million euro for an abuse of a dominant position to one of the leading companies within the gas industry in Spain, Gas Natural. Gas Natural further (...)

The appellate body of the Czech Office for Protection of Competition confirms abuse of dominant position by the energy incumbent (RWE Transgas)
Gide Loyrette Nouel
On 13 March 2007, the second instance decision of the Czech Office for Protection of Competition (the “Office”) was rendered by the Chairman of the Office (the “Chairman”) in the case of RWE Transgas a.s. (“RWE Transgas”, or the “company”), after the company appeal against the first instance decision. (...)

The Spanish Competition Authority fines for the third time an electricity utility for excessive high prices (Iberdrola Castellón)
European Court of Justice (Luxembourg)
Spanish Competition Authority (Tribunal de Defensa de la Competencia), 8 March 2007, Iberdrola Castellón, Decision n° 601/05 The time is come for Spanish main utilities to carry out a serious competition law assessment before putting a price to the power they offer within the framework of the (...)

The US Supreme Court clarifies that the test for predatory pricing also applies to situations of predatory bidding (Weyerhaeuser, Ross-Simmons Hardwood Lumber)
Perkins Coie (New York)
The general legal standard for determining whether unilateral conduct violates Section 2 of the Sherman Act. is murky, to say the least. Many courts have employed a “totality of the circumstances” approach, leaving it to the jury to decide whether, on balance, a particular business practice is (...)

The Belgian Competition Council orders an ICT company to disclose proprietary information over its electronic network (CRM/Portima)
Liege Competition and Innovation Institute
,
Unibet (London)
I. Parties Portima is an ICT company which provides electronic network and software services to insurance companies and brokers. Computer Ressource management (“CRM”) is a rival company which develops secured information exchange softwares for insurance companies and brokers. II. Facts (...)

The Bulgarian Supreme Administrative Court handed down an NCA decision finding that a holder of the trade mark “Der Grüne Punkt” abused its dominant position on the collective waste management market (Ecopack Bulgaria)
Kinstellar (Sofia)
On 9 February 2007 the Supreme Administrative Court (the “Supreme Court”) handed down a decision of the Bulgarian Commission for Protection of Competition (the “CPC”) finding that Ecopack Bulgaria AD (“Ecopack”), a collective waste-handling organization holding the right to use the trade mark “Der (...)

The Russian Federal Antimonopoly Service orders a chemical company to resume supply for producing iodine medicines (Troitsk Iodine Plant)
Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer (Moscow)
,
Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer
Commission of the Federal Antimonopoly Service (FAS), 6 February 2007, Troitsk Iodine Plant English Press Release On 6 February 2007 the Russian Federal Antimonopoly Service (FAS) ruled that Open Joint Stock Company Troitsk Iodine Plant (“Troitsk Iodine Plant”) had breached dominance-related (...)

The Swiss Competition Commission imposes a record fine of 333 M Swiss Francs to the telecommunications incumbent for abusive termination rates (Swisscom Mobile)
Lenz & Staehelin (Geneva)
I. Background In a decision of 5 February 2007, the Swiss Competition Commission ("Comco") held that Swisscom Mobile enjoys a dominant position on the market of termination of calls on its mobile phone network and abused its dominant position by applying an excessively high termination rate of (...)

The UK Court of Appeal overturns the High Court’s finding that British Horseracing Board has abused its dominant position by charging excessive and discriminatory prices (Attheraces v. BHB)
Hogan Lovells
England and Wales Court of Appeal (Civil Division), 2 February 2007, Attheraces Ltd and Attheraces (UK) ltd.v. The British Horseracing Board Ltd. And BHB Enterprises PLC, Case n° A3/2006/0126), [2007] EWCA Civ 38 On 2 February 2007, the Court of Appeal handed down a judgment upholding the (...)

The Paris Court of Appeal rejects the complaint of a French wholesaler-exporter of pharmaceutical products and allows quotas and refusals to sell (Pharma-Lab)
Total (London)
On 23 January 2007, the Paris Court of Appeal (hereinafter the “Court”) issued a judgment in which it dismissed an appeal filed against a decision rendered by the French Competition Council (the “Council”) pursuant to Articles 81 and 82 EC and national provisions similar to those articles. In this (...)

The Slovak Antimonopoly Office confirms the 2 M € fine imposed to the State owned rail/cargo company for foreclosure of the freight railway transport market (ZSSK Cargo Slovakia)
PRK Partners (Bratislava)
The second instance body of the Slovak Antimonopoly Office (AMO) rejected the appeal of the Slovak dominant rail cargo transportation company ZSSK Cargo Slovakia against the first instance decision of the AMO regarding abuse of its dominant position and confirmed the fine imposed on ZSSK Cargo (...)

The Cyprus Competition Authority fines the incumbent telecom provider € 38,000 for refusing to provide access to its SMS centre (CYTA / Golden Telemedia)
International Transport Forum
On December 19th, 2006 the Cyprus Commission for the Protection of Competition (C.P.C.) found the Cyprus Telecom Authority (CYTA), the incumbent telecom provider, liable for abusing its monopoly position in the upstream market for provision of access facilities necessary for value-added service (...)

The Romanian Competition Council heavily fines low prices and market sharing on the cable TV market (UPC, Hi-Fi Quadral, Astral Telecom, Cablevision)
Gide Loyrette Nouel
,
Dechert (Paris)
The Cable TV Decision (decision n° 237/2006 - the “Decision”) was rendered by the Romanian Competition Council on 12 December 2006, at the end of Romania’s pre-accession period. The thorough analysis included in the Decision may be regarded as evidence that the Council has reached a high level of (...)

A US District Court dismisses antitrust claims arising from an allegation of foreign related conduct that affected the plaintiff’s foreign sales (AMD / Intel)
Sheppard Mullin (San Francisco)
Court dismisses AMD’s “foreign commerce claims” against Intel for lack of subject matter jurisdiction and standing* In a recent opinion, the District Court for the District of Delaware dismissed AMD’s antitrust claims against Intel that arose out of Intel’s alleged foreign-related conduct that (...)

The UK telecommunications regulator concludes that British Telecom has not infringed Art. 82 EC and its national equivalent in relation to the pricing of its digital cordless fixed-line telephones (BT Cordless)
Autorité de contrôle prudentiel
Background On 29 March 2005, the UK telecommunications regulator, OFCOM, received a complaint from two competitors of BT Group plc (“BT”) on the market for the wholesale supply of consumer fixed-line telephone equipment in the UK. The complaint alleged that BT was dominant in the supply of (...)

The Hellenic Competition Authority rules that the decision of a dominant pharmaceutical firm to stop supplying the wholesalers and distribute the pharmaceuticals itself breaches the Greek Competition Act but not Art. 82 EC despite effect on trade between Member States (GlaxoSmithKline / SYFAIT)
Agora Trading
THE FACTS The dispute between GlaxoSmithKline (hereinafter “GSK”) and the Greek pharmaceutical wholesalers has its routes in 2000, when associations of the latter (amongst them “Sineterismos Farmakopion Etolias & Akarnanias”, “SYFAIT”) submitted numerous complaints to the Hellenic Competition (...)

The Polish Competition Authority condemns for the first time on the basis of both national competition law and Art. 82 EC the increase of certain telecommunications services charges by the incumbent (TP)
French National Research Agency (ANR)
The commented decision is the first decision by which the Polish Competition Authority condemned an entrepreneur for abusing its dominant position on the basis of the national and European competition law. It is thus the first Polish application of the obligation established by Article 3 (...)

The French supreme Court holds that the fact that competitors have found alternative solutions to avoid detrimental effects of price squeezing of the telco incumbent is irrelevant to establish an abuse under Art. 82 EC (ETNA / France Telecom-SFR)
Kramer Levin Naftalis & Frankel (Paris)
,
Eversheds Sutherland (Paris)
,
Eversheds Sutherland (Paris)
Background When an individual makes a call from a landline to a mobile phone, the call is first directed through a landline network until interconnection with the mobile network. Then the landline operator is relayed by the mobile operator which directs the call to the addressee and (...)

The German Bundeskartellamt fines spice producers again for exclusivity clauses and other contractual agreements that could lead to factual exclusivity (Fuchs, Teuto)
Norton Rose Fulbright
In a decision dated 9 May 2006, the German Federal Cartel Office (“FCO”) has imposed a fine of EUR 250.000 against TEUTO Gewürzvertriebs GmbH (“TEUTO”), an undertaking belonging to the Fuchs Gewürze group, for violating a prohibition decision of the FCO dating back to July 2002. 1. Background The (...)

The UK Competition Appeal Tribunal relies on the refusal to supply doctrine to adopt a very wide interpretation of abuse (Burgess/OFT)
British Institute of International and Comparative Law
CHRONOLOGY On 16 January 2002, W Austin and Sons (Stevenage) Limited (“Austins”) wrote to J.J. Burgess and S.J. Burgess trading under the name JJ Burgess and Sons (“Burgess”) refusing Burgess access to Harwood Park with effect from 18 January 2002. On 21 January 2002, Burgess complained to the (...)

The Italian NCA fines € 1.6 M the incumbent postal operator for exclusionary tariffs based on a national decree on the basis of Art. 10, 82 and 86 EC (Posta Ibrida)
London School of Economics
Poste Italiane SpA (hereinafter, “Poste Italiane”) is the incumbent operator in the postal sector in Italy. It operates in the hybrid mail sub-sector through Postel SpA (hereinafter, “Postel”), a subsidiary it owns 80% of. In 2003, an undertaking active in the hybrid mail sub-sector lodged a (...)

The Court of First Instance of The Hague dismisses a complaint for abusive access tariff on the broadband Internet access (Educatief Net - Easynet / KPN Telecom)
European Commission - DG HR
,
Dutch Ministry of Security and Justice
Nl.tree was established by nine cable operators, in order to supply, following an agreement concluded with the Dutch Ministry of Education, internet access and related services, known as “Kennisnet”, to primary schools, secondary schools and vocational and adult learning institutions. Broadband (...)

The Polish Competition Authority rules on collective dominance in the mobile telephony sector (Polska Telefonica Cyfrowa / Centertel / Polkomtel)
Comper Fornalczyk & Partners
Article 25 recital 2 of the Polish Telecommunication Act provides the President of the Polish Office of Electronic Communication (Telecom Regulator) with the power to consult the Competition Authority regarding the market structure in question. The President of the Polish Office of Competition (...)

The Danish Competition Appeal Tribunal annuls the Competition Authority’s decision condemning the telecommunications incument for abuse of dominance through margin squeeze (TDC)
Danish Competition and Consumer Authority (Copenhagen)
On 10 February 2006, the Danish Competition Appeal Tribunal (“D-CAT”) partially annulled a decision by the Danish Competition Council (“DCC”) condemning the Danish incumbent telecommunications operator, TDC, for abusing its dominant position under section 11(1) of the Danish Competition Act by (i) (...)

The Paris Court of Appeal limits the scope of the essential facilities theory by declining to consider abusive a refusal to access to a software (NMPP / MLP)
Simmons & Simmons (Paris)
,
Hewlett Packard (Boulogne-Billancourt)
Background In 2003 Messageries Lyonnaises de Presse (MLP), a press distributor, filed a complaint with the French Competition Council (hereinafter "the Council") against Nouvelles Messageries de Presse Parisienne (NMPP) on the grounds that the latter was conducting an anti-competitive practice (...)

The Court of Appeal of Athens examines the concept of the abuse of dominant position in the context of the mobile telephony market (2093/2006)
University of Reading
The facts An agent selling mobile phones lodged a complaint to the Court of First Instance of Athens against its supplier claiming that the latter’s decision to terminate their agreement constituted an anti-competitive unilateral behaviour breaching the relevant national competition law (...)

The Turkish Competition Authority fines € 4 M the telecom incumbent for abusive exclusive practices on the mobile phone market (Turkcell)
Jones Day (Paris)
,
Gide Loyrette Nouel
Pursuant to Article 6 of the Law on the Protection of Competition n° 4054 (the “Law”), abuse of dominant position is prohibited (For a restatement of Turkish Competition provisions, see Prof. Dr. Ercüment Erdem, Overview on Turkish Competition Law, e-Competitions, n° 13152). It is forbidden for (...)

The Slovenian Competition Authority rejects an abuse of dominant position claim by a mobile phone operator against the incumbent after a full-blown economic analysis (Mobitel / Western Wireless)
Fatur
This case started in 2003, when mobile phone operator Western Wireless International complained to the Slovenian Competition Authority about the abusive pricing practices, cross-subsidizing of different telecommunication services and restrictive contracts condition of its rival Mobitel on the (...)

The Hungarian Competition Office applies both national and EC leading abuse case concerning spare parts (Hewlett-Packard)
lakatos, koves and partners
,
lakatos, koves and partners
The Hungarian Competition Office (HCO) applied European law in proceedings against a leading printer manufacturer that had been launched due to its alleged abuse of its dominant position on the market of printer cartridges. The alleged abuse concerned the wording of the warranty letter of the (...)

The Brussels Court of Appeal rules that a non-compete clause does not qualify as an anticompetitive agreement under Art. 81 EC but constitutes an abuse of a dominant position on the basis of Art. 82 EC (WEX/FEBIAC)
European Chemicals Agency
,
Hogan Lovells (Brussels)
Background FEBIAC, a Belgian federation of road transport vehicle manufacturers, organises road transport fairs for commercial vehicles in Brussels every other year. The 2005 fair would run from 14 to 23 January 2005. FEBIAC’s general conditions for participating at the 2005 fair contained a (...)

The Danish Competition Council condemns a car manufacturer for abusing its dominant position by imposing surprise inspections on spare part dealers (Mazda)
Danish Competition and Consumer Authority (Copenhagen)
On 26 October 2005, the Danish Competition Council (“DCC”) adopted a decision condemning Mazda Motor Denmark for abusing its dominant position under section 11(1) of the Danish Competition Act by informing its authorised dealers and repairers that it intended to carry out surprise inspections at (...)

The Hungarian Competition Council considers the refusal to supply of an undertaking allegedly in dominant position as having no negative effects on the basis of Art. 82 EC (Unilever)
Dentons (Paris)
The Hungarian Competition Council applied Article 82 of the EC Treaty in the Unilever Magyarország case. The Competition Council investigated a potential abuse of dominant position violating Article 82 originating from the reorganization (i. e. contraction) of the distribution network of (...)

The Danish Competition Authority finds that Skoda importer abused of its dominant position for operating a system of fidelity rebates (Pradan Auto Import)
Smartflats
,
Liège University - IEJE
On 31 August 2005 the Danish Competition Council decided that Skandinavisk Motor Co. (hereinafter “SMC”), formerly Pradan Auto Import, had abused its dominant position under section 11 of The Danish Competition Act (the Danish provision similar to article 82 EC) on the original Skoda spare parts’ (...)

The Swedish Market Court applies Art. 82 EC in accordance with Art. 3 of EC Reg. n° 1/2003 without regard to the effect on interstate trade criterion regarding alleged abusive pricing of Stockholm airport fees (Luftfartsverket)
Cederquist
,
Regeringskansliet
The case before the Swedish Market Court concerned the fees charged by the Swedish Civil Aviation Administration (Luftfartsverket, hereinafter “LFV”) for offering parking space for airport coaches at Arlanda airport outside Stockholm. On November 13, 2003, the Swedish Competition Authority (...)

The Administrative Regional Court of the Republic of Latvia confirms the Competition Authority’s decision having found the telecommunications market leader guity of abusive tying practices (Lattelekom)
Best Lawyers
Experience of Latvia in tie-in cases Abuse of dominant position is not often established in the competition law practice in Latvia. The Competition Council of Latvia (the Council) arrives at such conclusion only a couple of times a year. Only some of the decisions of the Council are challenged (...)

The French Competition Authority applies a "rule of reason analysis" to an abuse of dominant position in the press advertising sector (La Provence Group)
Sheppard Mullin (Brussels)
,
Lni avocats (Paris)
The La Provence group owns the two main regional daily newspapers distributed in Marseille (Southern France) namely Le Provençal and Le Méridional. The two newspapers transferred the exclusive responsibility for managing local advertising to Eurosud Publicité ; however, the commercial policy was (...)

The European Commission imposes a € 60 M fine against two companies in the pharmaceutical sector for abuse of a dominant position (AstraZeneca)
Danish Competition and Consumer Authority (Copenhagen)
,
European Commission - DG COMP (Brussels)
"AstraZeneca: the first abuse case in the pharmaceutical sector"* 1. Introduction On 15 June 2005 the Commission adopted a decision (‘Decision’) fining the Swedish company AstraZeneca AB and the UK company Astra-Zeneca Plc (together ‘AZ‘) 60 million euros due to their infringements of Article 82 (...)

The Cypriot Competition Authority imposes a fine for price squeezing and excessive pricing on the Internet services market (CYTA)
International Transport Forum
On 30 May 2005 the Cypriot Commission for the Protection of Competition (hereinafter C.P.C.) ended its own initiative investigation of the Cyprus Telecommunications Authority (hereinafter CYTA) by unanimously finding CYTA liable for abuse of its dominant position in the market for the provision (...)

The Finnish Competition Authority finds that the Finnish Telephone Number Service has abused its dominant position through hindering the emergence of new technology (SNOY)
McDermott Will & Emery (Brussels)
The Finnish Competition Authority held on the 17 May 2005 that the Finnish Telephone Number Service (SNOY) had abused its dominant position. The abuse entailed a practice whereby SNOY forced its customer companies offering telephone directory services not to offer their services to end (...)

The Hungarian Competition Authority fines T-Mobile for having misinformed consumers to the detriment of competitors on the basis of national competition provisions (T-Mobile)
McDermott Will & Emery (Brussels)
,
Government of the Czech Republic
The Hungarian Competition Council initiated proceedings against T-Mobile in order to find out whether it had violated Article 8 paragraphs 1 and 2 of the Hungarian Competition Act and Article 7 paragraphs (2) (b) of the Hungarian Act on Business Advertising Activity, through advertising the (...)

The Spanish competition authority adopts a prudent approach on alleged price squeeze and discriminatory practices by the telecommunications incumbent on interconnection and termination fees (Uni2-MCI WorldCom / Telefonica Móviles)
London School of Economics
Uni2 and MCI WorldCom España, two telecommunication operators, lodged a complaint on 31 October 2002 before the Servicio de Defensa de la Competencia (hereinafter, “SDC”) against Telefonica Móviles (hereinafter, “TME”). The SDC opened proceedings against TME and sent a draft decision to the Tribunal (...)

The Irish Competition Authority decides that the aggressive pricing strategy of a newspapers publisher in the market for advertising in local newspapers did not breach the Competition Act 2002 for lack of dominant position (Drogheda Independent Cy. -The Leader)
European Commission - DG HR
Decision of The Irish Competition Authority of 7 December 2004 (Case COM/05/03) The Drogheda Independent Company Limited (“the DIC”) publishes several newspaper titles, one of which being The Extra. The Leader, another publisher, lodged a complaint before the Irish Competition Authority and (...)

The Estonian Competition Board ends proceedings against the Port of Tallinn without finding discriminatory abuse (Eurodek / Port of Tallinn)
EFTA Surveillance Authority
1. Background information Eurodek Muuga Services OÜ (Eurodek) is a company within the Eurodek Group operating oil terminals in the Port of Muuga in Tallinn, Estonia. Port of Muuga is owned by a state owned company AS Tallinna Sadam (Port of Tallinn, PoT). PoT is the biggest cargo and passenger (...)

The Finnish Competition Authority proposes to the Market Court to impose a € 1 M fine to a telephone company for abuse of dominant position on the ADSL market consisting in refusal to grant access to its regional network on competitive conditions (Lännen Puhelin)
Université Catholique de Louvain
In a decision of 25 October 2004, the Finnish Competition Authority (hereafter FCA) proposed to the Market Court to impose a fine of one million euros on a regional telephone company (Lännen Puhelin). According to the FCA, Lännen Puhelin had abused its dominant position. Indeed, between the 1st (...)

Dutch competition authorities and judges disagree on the application of the essential facility ECJ case law on imposing on the television broadcaster the obligation to license to a newspaper its TV programme (NOS/Telegraaf)
European Commission - DG HR
The Dutch national competition authority (hereafter NCA) had imposed on NOS, a Dutch national television broadcaster, the obligation to license to the Telegraaf, a national newspaper, the weekly TV programme listing at a reasonable price. The Telegraaf intended to add to its Saturday edition a (...)

The German Federal Supreme Court facilitates claim of competitors for a compulsory license by widening the ECJ Magill and IMS case law (Standard - Spundfass)
White & Case (Hambourg)
,
Metro (Dusseldorf)
On 13 July 2004 the German Federal Supreme Court delivered a remarkable judgment on the prerequisites of a claim for the granting of a compulsory patent license under antitrust law. According to this judgment, the owner of a patent may be obliged to grant a license to competitors for products (...)

The Estonian Supreme Court issues a landmark decision on excessive pricing and interaction between competition law and regulation (Eesti Telefon)
EFTA Surveillance Authority
1. Background information AS Eesti Telefon (ET, currently Elion Ettevõtted AS) is the Estonian incumbent telecom operator. The Estonian Competition Board (ECB) initiated proceedings against ET after ET had implemented a price rise to its on-net telephone services provided at a fixed location. (...)

Luxembourg administrative courts find no anti-competitive practices in the context of a waste disposal scheme (SuperDrecksKëscht 2)
Arendt & Medernach (Luxembourg)
,
NautaDutilh (Luxembourg)
Background This case deals with alleged anti-competitive practices in the context of a waste disposal project, “SuperDrecksKëscht 2” (now “SuperDrecksKëscht fir Betriber”). The initiators of this project were the Administration de l’Environnement (“Environmental Administration”) within the Ministry of (...)

The Czech High Court upholds that the largest national producer of electricity violates its dominant position by discriminating against one of its long-term brown coal suppliers (ČEZ)
Weinhold Legal
,
CMS Cameron McKenna (Prague)
I. Introduction On 23 October 2001, the High Court in Olomouc upheld the decision of the President of the Czech Office for the Protection of Competition (the «Office»), which imposed a fine of CZK 7,500,000 on the company ČEZ, a. s., the largest producer of electricity in the Czech Republic (...)

Mergers

The German Competition Authority releases new draft guidance on substantive merger control
European Commission (Brussels)
Germany: The Bundeskartellamt releases new Draft Guidance on substantive Merger Control* On 21 July 2011, the Bundeskartellamt (BKartA) published its “Draft Guidance on Substantive Merger Control” for public consultation. The document is intended to provide guidance to companies and enhance (...)

The Turkish Competition Authority examines the privatisation of three electricity distribution companies (AYEDAS-Akdeniz Elektrik-Toroslar Elektrik)
King’s College (London)
The Turkish Competition Authority (TCA) reviewed the privatisation of three electricity distribution companies (namely, AYEDAS, Akdeniz Elektrik and Toroslar Elektrik) where 100% of the shares in each company were offered in a block sale. Pursuant to the official privatisation schedule, (...)

The Macedonian Administrative Court confirms a merger prohibition decision in the market for retail distribution of pharmaceutical products (Zegin)
University of Technology (Tallinn)
On 1 June 2006 Zegin, leading distributor of the pharmaceuticals on the territory of Skopje municipality agreed with two other retail distributors of medicines - Alkaloid and Pharma Corp. to acquire joint control over City Pharmacy in Skopje , which owned a network of pharmacies in the (...)

The Italian Competition Authority gives the go-ahead to the creation of a new multiutility operator with structural remedies (AEM / ASM Brescia)
Desogus Law Office (Cagliari)
A) The proposed merger The Italian Competition Authority has unconditionally approved a merger between two publicly-owned multiutility firms, AEM and ASM Brescia (ASM). According to the merger agreement, AEM shall absorb ASM and the resulting entity shall be denominated A2A. The municipality (...)

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