In order to ensure consistency with the EC regime, the UK system for notification of agreements under the Competition Act 1998 (the CA) was abolished on 1 May 2004. The OFT does not therefore accept notifications for decision or guidance under the Act. The OFT, however, continues to offer a system of confidential informal advice. Further, where a case raises novel or unresolved questions about the application of Articles 81, 82 and/or the equivalent UK prohibitions under the CA and the OFT considers that there is an interest in issuing clarification for the benefit of a wider audience, the OFT may, like the European Commission (which may issue Guidance Letters), offer written guidance in the form of a published opinion. On 19 May 2005, the OFT issued its first advisory draft opinion
The UK OFT issues a draft opinion indicating that exclusive newspaper distribution arrangements granting absolute territorial protection are compatible with UK and EC competition law ("Distribution arrangements between newspaper and magazine publishers and wholesalers")
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