Information Exchanges Among Competitors under the New Horizontal Guidelines “ A Few Further Thoughts

Andreas Reindl, Feb 11, 2011

In December 2010 the Commission adopted the revised Horizontal Guidelines with a new chapter on information exchanges. The draft Guidelines already proposed sound principles for the analysis of information exchanges, as I explained in my earlier comment. I believe that the final text is a further improvement on the draft Guidelines in some important aspects. The Commission deserves credit for being open and receptive to comments and for taking suggestions on board, to a much greater extent than during recent other drafting exercises.

In this contribution I briefly comment on the substantially revised and expanded discussion in the Horizontal Guidelines on how to handle unilateral information disclosures, a complex question of great practical relevance for market participants. I will also provide some thoughts on the conceptual/systemic question, which has been highlighted by the Horizontal Guidelines and the debate surrounding them, whether European competition law continues to compartmentalize analysis in light of applicable Commission instruments and neglects general principles that should uniformly inform all competition analysis.




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