Competition law contains wide-ranging prohibitions against anticompetitive issues when companies enter into agreements with either competitors, suppliers or distributors. The content of the
prohibitions has developed in 60+ years of case law and is backed up by competition authorities having the authority to carry out intrusive investigations and imposing fines. Navigating these prohibitions can sometimes be difficult and involve substantial assessment and judgment calls. It is up to companies to self-assess their agreements to ensure compliance. Block exemption regulations (or in short ‘block exemptions’) are amongst the most used EU antitrust tools in day to day operations for competition law advisors, both in private practice and in companies. Block exemptions play an important role in ensuring inter alia consistency and legal certainty in (self) assessing a range of common commercial actions when dealing with e.g. competitors, suppliers and distributors. Without block exemptions, it would be much more complex for companies to assess, whether many of their commonly occurring activities entail any risk of constituting infringements of competition law.