Monday, March 10, 2014
The Principle of Equality: A Limit to the Commission's Discretion in EU Competition Law Enforcement?
Katharina Voss, Stockholm University Department of Law asks The Principle of Equality: A Limit to the Commission's Discretion in EU Competition Law Enforcement?
ABSTRACT: This article evaluates whether the principle of equality has a limiting effect on the Commission’s enforcement of EU competition law. An analysis of the Commission’s discretion during the enforcement of EU competition law and an examination of the principle of equality build the foundation for that evaluation. One can distinguish between situations where two parties to the same case are treated differently and where two parties to different cases are treated differently. In these two situations, the limitations of the principle of equality on the discretion of the Commission are discussed with regard to the remedies used and the magnitude of fines imposed. It is concluded that the principle of equality has very little influence on the Commissions actions in the field of EU competition law enforcement and some improvements are suggesteed to ensure transparency in the process of enforcement.