Commitment Decisions under Article 9 of Regulation 1/2003: A Critical

Report
European University Institute
- Department of Law
Commitment Decisions under Article 9 of
Regulation 1/2003:
A critical assessment and lessons learned from the
current decisional practice
Andreas Scordamaglia
CLEEN Workshop - Norwich
11-13 June 2008
Introduction
Article 9(1) of Regulation 1/2003:
“Where the Commission intends to adopt a decision requiring that an infringement
be brought to an end and the undertakings concerned offer commitments to meet
the concerns expressed to them by the Commission in its preliminary assessment,
the Commission may by decision make those commitments binding on the
undertakings. Such a decision may be adopted for a specified period and shall
conclude that there are no longer grounds for action by the Commission.”
Andreas Scordamaglia (EUI) - Commitments
Presentation layout
1.
“Genesis” and Challenges of Commitment Decisions
2.
Adopting Article 9 Commitment decisions
3.
Content of Article 9 Commitment decisions
4.
Effects and Judicial Review of Article 9 Decisions
5.
Commission’s informal settlements practice
6.
Concluding Remarks – Challenges Ahead
Andreas Scordamaglia (EUI) - Commitments
I. The “Genesis” and the Challenges of
Commitment Decisions
1.
2.
Emergence of Article 9 Commitment decisions
Advantages
1.
2.
3.
For competition authorities: (a) an early closing of a file ending b)
minimises the risk of an appeals c) effectively frees up valuable resources
d) a more flexible, better targeted and consensual remedies
For private undertakings: a) an automatic elimination of the risk of
being imposed a fine, b) saving on time and legal / economic advice fees,
c) commitment decisions cannot be used for private damages claims, d)
better suited solution through greater insight of the Commission’s
concerns, e) avoidance of negative publicity
Risks
1.
2.
Lack of transparency (no follow-on actions, no precedential value)
Risk of Commission abuse (ex. Alrosa judgement)
Andreas Scordamaglia (EUI) - Commitments
II. Adopting of Article 9 Commitment decisions
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
6.
Commission’s powers of initiative
Scope of application and the risk of “indirect” regulation
Preliminary assessment : form and content
The undertakings’ commitment proposal
The Commission’s assessment of the commitment
proposal
Interested parties observations – Market-testing : Article
27(4)
1.
2.
Assessment of the third party observations
Access to third party observations
Andreas Scordamaglia (EUI) - CLEEN Workshop 2008
III. Content of Article 9 Commitment decisions (1)
1.
2.
The rules of substance
i.
Types and extent of commitments
ii.
Period of validity
The Commission’s decisional practice: currently 11 decisions issued, 5 pending,
2 ongoing investigation)
i.
ii.
Article 81 (10 cases)
a.
Football media right cases (Bundesliga COMP/37.214 ; Premier League
COMP/38.173
b.
Collective societies cases (Cannes Agreement COMP/38.681 ; BUMA & SABAM
COMP/39.151 & COMP/37.749, CISAC COMP/38/698)
c.
The Airline Cooperation Agreement cases (AA/SAS COMP/37.749 ; Sky
Team COMP/37.984)
d.
Vertical restraints cases (Repsol COMP/38.348 ; Daimler Chrysler etc
COMP/39.143 ; Groupement des Cartes Bancaires COMP/38.606
Article 82 (3 cases)
a.
Coca-cola COMP/39.116
b.
Distrigaz COMP/37.966
c.
Alrosa/De Beers COMP/38.381
d.
E.ON and RWE (MEMO/08/132)
Andreas Scordamaglia (EUI) - CLEEN Workshop 2008
III. Content of Article 9 Commitment decisions (2)
Annex I: Article 9 Commitment De cisio ns cases
Case
Type of
concern
Market test
notice
Initiation
Date of
decision
Time btw
notice &
decision
O utcome
Deci s ion
appl ic ati on
COMP/37.214
DFB-Deutscher
Fussballb
Art.81
Not ific ation +
ex em ption
14.09.2 004
19.01.2005
4 m onths
Decision
01.06.2 009
COMP/39.116
Coca-Cola
Art.82
Com plaint
19.10.2 004
22.06.2005
8 m onths
Decision
31.12.2 010
COMP/38.381
AL ROSA + De
Beers group1
Art.82
Art.81
Not ific ation +
ex em ption
03.06.2 005
22.02.2006
9 m onths
Decision
annulle d
01.01.2 009
COMP/38.173
Football
Association
PremierL eague
Art.81
Com m ission +
ex em ption
01.11.2 005
22.03.2006
5 m onths
Decision
30.06.2 013
COMP/38.348
REPSOL
Art.81
Not ific ation +
ex em ption
20.10.2 004
12.04.2006
18m onths
Decision
31.11.2 011
COMP/38.681
The Canne s
Agreeme nt
Art.81
Not ific ation +
ex em ption
23.05.2 006
04.10.2006
4 m onths
Decision
Art.81
Com m ission
23.03.2 007
14.09.2007
6 m onths
Decision
31.05.2 010
6 m onths
Decision
31.12.2 010
COMP/39.143 39.140
Daim lerChrysler Toy
COMP/37.966
Distriga z
Art.82
Com m ission
05.04.2 007
11.10.2007
MEMO/07/413
Groupeme nt des
Cartes Bancaires
Art.81
Com m ission
-
17.10.2007
COMP/39.152CO
MP/39.153
BUMA & SABAM
Art.81
Not ific ation +
ex em ption
03.08.2 005
Pending
dec ision
COMP/37.749
Austrian Ai rlines &
SAS
Art.81
Not ific ation +
ex em ption
22.09.2 005
Pending
dec ision
COMP/38.698
CISAC Agreement
Art.81
Com plaint
14.06.2 007
Pending
dec ision
COMP/37.984
SK YTEAM
Art.81
Com m ission
19.10.2 007
Pending
dec ision
ota,G M,Fiat
Andreas Scordamaglia (EUI) - CLEEN Workshop 2008
Rejection
25.04.2008
01.05.2 008
IV. Effects and Judicial Review of Article 9
Decisions
1.
Effects on the “concerned undertaking”
i.
ii.
Compliance safeguards (Articles 23(2) and 24 Reg.1/2003)
Reopening the proceedings
2.
Effects on “third parties”
3.
Effects on competition enforcers (Rec.13(2) v Art.16)
i.
ii.
iii.
4.
On the Commission
On NCAs
On National Courts
Judicial review - alignment to Article 7 decisions
Andreas Scordamaglia (EUI) - CLEEN Workshop 2008
V. The Commission’s informal settlements practice
(1)
1.
General Overview (2000-2005 only 10% of cases
closed through formal decision procedure CPR2005)
Informal settlements in post-modernisation
2.
i.
ii.
3.
The “last-minute” cases (Gaz de France (IP/04/573) , Interbrew
(IP/04/574)
The “Gas Supply market” cases (Distrigaz)
Other sectors
i. Hollywood Studios (IP/04/1314)
ii. Deutsche Telekom (IP/05/1033)
iii. Phillips CD-Recordable Disk (IP/06/139)
Andreas Scordamaglia (EUI) - CLEEN Workshop 2008
V. The Commission’s informal settlements practice
(2)
Annex II: Informal settlements after May 1 2004
Press release
number
1
IP/04/1314
2
IP/05/195
3
IP/05/710
4
IP/05/1033
5
6
Case
Film distribution
OMV and
Gazprom
Ruhrgas &
Gazprom
Type of
concern
Date
Art.81
06.10.2004
Art.81
17.02.2005
Art.81
10.06.2005
Deutsche
Telekom (DT)
Art.82
03.08.2005
IP/06/139
Philips CDRecordable Disk
Patent Licencing
Art.81 and
Art.82
09.02.2006
IP/08/22
Apple iTunes1
Art.81
09.01.2008
Andreas Scordamaglia (EUI) - CLEEN Workshop 2008
V. The Commission’s informal settlements practice
(3)
Andreas Scordamaglia (EUI) - CLEEN Workshop 2008
Concluding Remarks
1.
2.
3.
Increasing use of “commitments”
Predominance of Article 81 (notification cases)
Article 82 cases - significant number ; particular interest in
the gas sector
4.
Informal settlements perseverance
5.
Alrosa judgement : clearly accountability of the
Commission
1. Commission expected to substantiate its preliminary
assessment
2. Full judicial review of the proportionality
3. Clear protection of undertakings’ procedural rights
6.
Lessened attraction to “commit” for the Commission
although probably still useful for the future
Andreas Scordamaglia (EUI) - CLEEN Workshop 2008
Thank you very much for your attention
Andreas Scordamaglia (EUI) - CLEEN Workshop 2008

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