On 30 September 2004, Wilmer Cutler Pickering Hale and Dorr LLP, the University of Nyenrode, and Global Competition Review co-sponsored a seminar on the reform of Article 82 EC by the European Commission. The seminar raised a great deal of interest amongst members of the legal community and attracted a large attendance. The speakers included some of the most well-known top-level policy makers, academics, and practitioners in the field of competition law. Over the last two years, there have been numerous calls for modernization of the way in which Article 82 of the EC Treaty is applied by the European Commission and, with decentralization in mind, by 25 national competition authorities and many more national courts. Modernization in other areas has involved a greater focus on the economic effects of the relevant practice. In Article 82 EC cases, enforcement has, however, been more based on the perceived object of a criticized practice with the effect being inferred from market power. Classic positions on fidelity market power. Classic positions on fidelity rebates and the special responsibilities of dominant companies have also been reaffirmed recently by the European Court in judgments such as Michelin II, Masterfoods II, and BA/Virgin. The aim of the seminar was to look at the concepts underlying the current law in relation to rebates and tying and bundling to compare how EU and US enforcers deal with such issues and to make suggestions for possible European Commission guidelines on Article 82 EC enforcement practice.


Antitrust and Trade Regulation

Date of this Version

November 2004