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The EU General Court annuls in its entirety the Commission’s decision to fine a chipmaker €1B for exclusivity payments to a smartphone manufacturer on the grounds that the economic analysis was unsubstantiated and procedural errors undermined the rights of the defence (Qualcomm)

On 15 June 2022, the General Court of the European Union (“GC”) upheld all of Qualcomm’s arguments and therefore annulled the decision of the European Commission (“Commission”) fining Qualcomm € 1 billion for abuse of dominant position on the Long-Term Evolution (“LTE”) chipsets market. In particular, the GC observed several procedural irregularities that affected Qualcomm’s rights of defence. In addition, the GC found substantive irregularities that affected the analysis of the anticompetitive effects, most notably because the Commission failed to account for all relevant surrounding circumstances when assessing Qualcomm’s practices. Background In 2018, the Commission imposed fines totalling € 997.439 million on chipset producer Qualcomm for abusing a dominant position contrary to Article 102

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Authors

  • Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
  • Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
  • Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)

Quotation

Barbara Monti, David Hull, Nicole Sunderlin, The EU General Court annuls in its entirety the Commission’s decision to fine a chipmaker €1B for exclusivity payments to a smartphone manufacturer on the grounds that the economic analysis was unsubstantiated and procedural errors undermined the rights of the defence (Qualcomm), 15 June 2022, e-Competitions Preview, Art. N° 107661

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