A PYMNTS Company

Deterring EU Competition Law Infringements: Are We Using the Right Sanctions? Brussels December 3, 2012

 |  September 24, 2012

Organizers welcome support from Schindler Holding AG and the Association of Corporate Counsels, for more information.

“Sanctions are a critical component of any legal regime and competition law should be no exception. Competition law regimes across the world have typically relied on a diverse set of sanctions to deter companies from engaging in anti-competitive behaviour. The EU competition law regime has so far focused on corporate fines, which have risen significantly over the last 20 years. This evolution seems to be in great part due to the Commission’s desire to increase deterrence. However, in recent years, some voices have questioned whether increasing the level of corporate fines is indeed the most appropriate means for increasing deterrence. A number of other criticisms have also been addressed to the European sanctioning regime, ranging from its allegedly high level of uncertainty, its compatibility with international instruments protecting due process, its blindness to corporate compliance programs, or the absence of individual sanctions targeting the individuals who are actually instrumental in the violation of competition law. Are those criticisms founded? Are there major issues with the EU competition law regime? Does it need reform if it wants to achieve its stated goal of higher deterrence?

To take stock of what is known about this question, the Tilburg Law and Economics Center (TILEC) at Tilburg University and the Liège Competition and Innovation Institute (LCII) at the University of Liège organize a whole-day conference in Brussels on 3 December 2012.* Speakers include prominent academics, enforcers, and practitioners. The conference aims at bringing detailed analysis and up-to-date knowledge to at a large audience of practitioners, academics, public officials, and competition policy observers.