CASE COMMENTS: EUROPEAN AND INTERNATIONAL LAW - SPAIN - HORIZONTAL AGREEMENTS - JOINT LOBBYING

Spain: The Spanish Supreme Court finds that the joint proposal, submitted by several cotton ginning companies to the public administration, to include in a Royal Decree a limitation of the subsidies to certain companies does not breach competition rules, insofar as there is no sign of fraud or deceit in the information submitted to the authorities (Eurosemillas, Algodonera del Sur, Agrupación Española de Desmotadora de Algodón)

In three recently issued judgments the Spanish Supreme Court reduced the fines imposed by the Spanish Competition Authority (CNMC) on eight undertakings active in the cotton ginning sector after excluding from the single and continuous infringement the conduct consisting of market foreclosure and boycott. In a decision of 19 December 2013 (CNMC, decision of 19 December 2013, case S/0378/11, Cotton Ginning Companies), the CNMC fined thirteen companies and two associations for a single and continuous infringement of Article 1 of the Spanish Competition Act (“LDC”). The conducts consisted of price fixing, market sharing and closing the market to other companies, particularly by boycotting the cotton ginning company Algodonera La Blanca Paloma. The sanctioned undertakings lodged appeals

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Paloma Martínez-Lage Sobredo, Spain: The Spanish Supreme Court finds that the joint proposal, submitted by several cotton ginning companies to the public administration, to include in a Royal Decree a limitation of the subsidies to certain companies does not breach competition rules, insofar as there is no sign of fraud or deceit in the information submitted to the authorities (Eurosemillas, Algodonera del Sur, Agrupación Española de Desmotadora de Algodón), 10 June 2019, Concurrences N° 4-2019, Art. N° 92405, pp. 202-203

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