Monday, July 20, 2015
Wouter P. J. Wils, King's College London; European Commission asks Ten Years of Commitment Decisions Under Article 9 of Regulation 1/2003: Too Much of a Good Thing?
ABSTRACT: Article 9 of Regulation 1/2003 created a new mechanism, allowing the European Commission to close an investigation into a suspected infringement of the antitrust prohibitions contained in Articles 101 and 102 TFEU by making commitments offered by the companies concerned binding on those companies ("commitment decisions"). Leaving aside the area of cartels, for which commitment decisions are not available, more than half of the formal decisions adopted by the Commission in the ten years since the entry into force of Regulation 1/2003 have been commitment decisions. Several commentators have expressed concerns about the risk of excessive use of the instrument of commitment decisions. To what extent are these concerns justified?