Competition and Antitrust



Meet the Co-chairs - TAGLAW


Dekker, Cees
Nysingh advocaten-notarissen N.V.
cees.dekker@nysingh.nl


Hill, Christopher S.
Kirton McConkie, PC
chill@kmclaw.com


Hauck, Dieter
Preslmayr Rechtsanwälte
hauck@preslmayr.at



Author: Dieter Hauck

This update addresses the following key points:

  • The Cartel Act Amendment Law 2017 implemented the EU Cartel Damages Directive (2014/104).
  • The law contains a new consideration threshold – as compared to the turnover thresholds also in place – of €200 million, combined with a test that the target must perform a "significant amount of activities in Austria".
  • This may cause more mergers to be caught by the Austrian merger control system and creates some ambiguity.

Read the entire article.


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Introduction

Excessive pricing is one of the highly debated topics in competition law. In brief, it could be defined as the designated price that is consistently higher than the fair price in the market. It is considered as a type of unfair pricing. Excessive pricing is interpreted differently in various legal systems, especially in the European Union ("EU") and United Stated of America ("USA"). In the USA, excessive pricing is not considered as an abuse; whereas, in the EU, the competition authority in various cases considers it to be an abuse under Article 102(a) of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union ("TFEU"). Turkish competition law maintains a parallel stance as compared to EU practice.

Read more: Excessive Pricing in Turkish Competition Law


Introduction

The usage of e-books increases every day. Moreover, the discussion has ensued as to whether e-books will replace printed books, and make the latter "vintage." The future will reveal the answer soon. Leaving this discussion aside, the rapidly growing e-book popularity in the e-commerce sector is a fact.

Amazon EU S.à.r.l ("Amazon") is the largest e-book distributor in Europe. Therefore, Amazon's activities draw the attention of the European Commission ("Commission"). Indeed, the Commission has conducted a formal antitrust investigation with regard to Amazon's arrangements with e-book publishers, which contain the so-called "most favored nation clauses" ("MFN"). On May 4, 2017, the Commission adopted a decision that renders legally binding the commitments offered by Amazon. The commitments address the Commission's preliminary competition concerns relating to a number of clauses in Amazon's distribution agreements with e-book publishers in Europe1.

Additionally, the Competition and Markets Authority (United Kingdom) and the Bundeskartellamt (Germany) also investigated Amazon's MFN arrangements, but terminated their investigations due to the fact that Amazon had terminated its MFN applications.

Read more: Amazon Decision and E-Book Commitments in the EU


A judgment imposing a €1.06 billion fine on Intel for abuse of a dominant position has been set aside by the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU).

On 6 September 2017, the CJEU set aside the judgment of the General Court that upheld the €1.06 billion fine imposed on Intel by the European Commission for abuse of a dominant position. The CJEU has referred the case back to the General Court so that it may examine the arguments put forward by Intel in relation to whether the rebates at issue are capable of restricting competition.

Read the entire article.


Author: Tom Griffith

A number of vocational education providers recently been targeted by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) in light of various unlawful sales tactics deployed by them.

In the last two months alone, the Federal Court of Australia has ruled against three major service providers, Get Qualified Australia Pty Ltd, Acquire Learning and Careers Pty Ltd and Unique International College Pty Ltd. Acquire Learning and Careers has been ordered to pay penalties of $4.5 million which is the ACCC’s second largest consumer protection penalty. Penalties are yet to be decided in the case of Get Qualified and Unique.

Read more: Vocational Education and Training Industry Service Providers taught a lesson in the Federal Court...