Thursday, September 5, 2019
The effective public enforcement of the prohibition of anti-competitive agreements: which factors influence the high percentage of annulments of Dutch cartel fines?
ABSTRACT: The Dutch enforcement of the European and Dutch cartel prohibition is characterized by high rates of litigation and successful litigation. Several studies have devoted attention to these phenomena, all unraveling parts of the puzzle as to how the occurrence of these percentages can be explained. The subject of this article, an analysis of the factors which influence the rate of successful litigation, is however missing in this body of literature. To begin with, a theoretical framework of possible influencing factors is designed on the basis of relevant academic literature. In order to evaluate whether the factors identified in the literature can explain the Dutch practice, an assessment is carried out using several means, including a further analysis of the Dutch cartel practice, interviews with involved stakeholders, and comparisons with other Member States and Dutch market supervisors. The article concludes that specific factors that are woven into the Dutch practice (including specific court, party, and case characteristics), in combination with the nature of competition law, influence the Dutch annulment rate.