Monday, January 8, 2018
Siún O’Keeffe addresses the Use and Importance of Market Studies in Modern Competition Enforcement.
ABSTRACT: Concerns of the digital age are manifold and one of them is the length of time it takes an authority to adopt an antitrust decision. A lot of this discussion stems from the fact that the Google decision imposing a 2.4 billion euro fine on the online search company, was adopted 8 years after the announcement of the initial investigation. It takes little account of the efforts put into reaching a commitment decision, in 2012 and 2013, presumably evidence that the European Commission’s goal was to find a swift and effective solution. Another example, frequently cited, is that the recent European Court of Justice judgment in the Intel appeal relates to activity that took place between 2002 and 2007. This despite the fact that the adoption of the Intel decision by the European Commission, which fined Intel 1.06 billion euros and effectively halted the behaviour complained of, was reached in 2009. That is 2 years after the time period of the alleged offence. The subsequent lapse of time related to the judicial appeal, which admittedly may be tiresome and expensive for the parties, but has no direct bearing on the time taken by the European Commission to conduct the investigation.