CONFERENCE - BELGIAN COMPETITION DAY - ENFORCEMENT OF COMPETITION RULES

Belgian Competition Day - Fostering private enforcement of the EU antitrust rules (Brussels, October 21th 2010)

In this contribution, Mr Eddy De Smijter discusses three issues. The first is the need to better enable the victims of competition law infringements to get the damages they are entitled to by improving the conditions under which compensation can be obtained, with special attention to methods for alternative dispute resolution. The second is the need to stimulate private enforcement by giving adequate support to national judges. The last is the need for a continued reflection on the ‘cohabitation’ between private and public enforcement (with amongst others attention for what public enforcement can do to foster private enforcement and the impact of private enforcement on leniency).

Fostering private enforcement of the EU antitrust rules Eddy DE SMIJTER Deputy Head of Unit A1 Private Enforcement DG Competition, European Commission I. The need to improve the conditions for victims to get the damages they are entitled to Some may doubt there is still a need today to improve the conditions for victims of competition law infringements to bring damages claims. To support that argument, reference is usually made to the increase in reported damages actions being brought. To fully appreciate that argument, one needs to check where these damages actions are being brought, who is bringing those actions and when. Conclusion: if there would indeed be any real increase in damages actions, then it basically concerns follow-on actions being brought by businesses in a handful

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Eddy de Smijter, Belgian Competition Day - Fostering private enforcement of the EU antitrust rules (Brussels, October 21th 2010), February 2011, Concurrences N° 1-2011, Art. N° 34753, pp. 11-13

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