On April 26, 2013, the State Administration for Industry and Commerce (“SAIC“) - one of China’s three antitrust law enforcement bodies - noted on its website that it had held a meeting with certain industry participants to obtain feedback on the latest draft Regulation on the Prohibition of Conduct Eliminating or Restricting Competition through Abuses of Intellectual Property Rights (“Draft IPR Abuse Regulation“). In a conference at Peking University on April 28, SAIC officials gave additional comments on the draft regulation.
The request for feedback on the draft regulation is just the latest in a series of developments in relation to antitrust enforcement in the field of intellectual p [...]
The Chinese Ministry of Commerce (“MOFCOM“) has stepped up its merger control activities on many fronts in recent weeks, issuing ground-breaking decisions in the Glencore/Xstrata and Marubeni/Gavilon cases and circulating draft procedural rules for public consultation on merger remedies and on dealing with straightforward merger control cases.
The new decisions
On April 16, 2013, MOFCOM issued approval for Glencore’s acquisition of Xstrata subject to conditions. Less than a week later, on April 22, it did likewise for the takeover of Gavilon by Marubeni.
Overall MOFCOM’s approach in both transactions was remarkably similar. However, there were also some key differences.
In March 2013, the President of the Polish Office of Competition and Consumer Protection (“OCCP”) published a new draft amendment to the Competition Act. If approved by the Council of Ministers, the draft will be sent to parliament and is likely to become effective by the end of this year.
The changes are far-reaching and are likely to have a direct impact on business activity in Poland. The main aim of the changes is to strengthen the enforcement powers of the competition authority, in particular through the imposition of individual liability for infringement, leniency programme modification, the introduction of leniency plus, as well as a system of public warnings for practices which t [...]
US and EU antitrust law – antipodes as far as individual liability is concerned?
The US and EU approaches with regard to individual liability for competition law infringements have traditionally been notoriously different. US antitrust enforcement is well-known for its use of criminal sanctions against individuals, from fines to imprisonment. Since 2004, an individual who takes part in a cartel in the US can be imprisoned for up to ten years under the US Sherman act. In 2011 some 35 to 40 individuals received an average prison sentence of 17 months in the USA for cartel activities. By contrast, EU competition law exclusively focuses on infringements of competition law by “undertakings” [...]
Article 101(2) TFEU states that agreements and decisions by associations of undertakings that contravene Article 101(1) TFEU are null and void. However, it is silent on the fate of concerted practices. Strikingly, apart from a tangential reference in the odd Opinion of an Advocate General or one Order of the President of the General Court, there is – to the best of my knowledge – no case law addressing the question of nullity for concerted practices. I have always found it intriguing that so little has been written about this issue and that the case law of the EU Courts on the topic is so scarce.
One may wonder whether the Treaty’s silence on this issue is simply the result of an omiss [...]
Here is an item on an important decision of Canada’s Competition Tribunal written by my partners George Addy, Sandra Forbes, John Bodrug and Jim Dinning. It is especially relevant for trade associations – Mark
On April 15, 2013, the Canadian Competition Tribunal released its decision dismissing the Commissioner of Competition’s application against the Toronto Real Estate Board (“TREB”). The Commissioner had alleged that TREB had abused a dominant position in the market for residential real estate brokerage services by implementing rules that limit how its member brokers and agents can provide certain information to consumers over the Internet.
Davies was counsel to an intervenor, The Canadia [...]