For several months now, competition authorities, both at the Community and national levels, have undoubtedly intensified their action against anticompetitive practices and more specifically against cartels. As a result, the activity in this field has been sustained and sanctions have become higher and higher. In particular, the new Commission guidelines on the method of setting fines (the Guidelines) reflect the willingness to increase significantly the amounts involved. Thus, pursuant to the Guidelines: (i) the basic amount of the fine will be based on a percentage of the yearly sales of goods and services, net of tax, to which the infringement directly or indirectly relates in the relevant geographic area, for each company concerned. This percentage (estimated according to various
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