Thursday, April 28, 2016
Extraterritorial Reach of Swiss Competition Law: The BMW Case and Its Consequences for Worldwide Distribution Agreements
David Mamane and Karin Hummel, both Schellenberg Wittmer Ltd discuss Extraterritorial Reach of Swiss Competition Law: The BMW Case and Its Consequences for Worldwide Distribution Agreements.
ABSTRACT: Swiss competition law is applicable to restrictive practices adopted by companies outside its national territory, to the extent they have effects in Switzerland, which is very broadly interpreted. This has consequences for all firms outside of Switzerland, among others, EU producers with distribution agreements with companies outside of Switzerland that prevent or hinder sales into Switzerland. Under Swiss competition law, obstacles of parallel imports that lead to absolute territorial protection are in principle regarded as inadmissible. Justification based on economic efficiency is theoretically possible, but it remains open how the appropriate evidence could be provided.