Vertical Agreements Commission

First use by the French competition authority of the instruments put in place by the Macron and Egalim laws, in order to make legally binding commitments by four large food distribution companies aimed at reducing the competition concerns raised by their joint purchasing agreements on the retail brand (…) The idea that platform self-preference hinders innovation is totally speculative. In addition, it contrasts completely with a series of studies that show that it is probably the opposite. In reality, the competition of platforms is more complicated than simple theories of vertical discrimination (…) An external evaluation study commissioned by the Commission for the purpose of the VBER examination does not contribute to clarity: it establishes mixed evidence of the impact of parity clauses on retail trade, depending on the nature of the clause and the specific market context. Given these differences, we can expect the Commission to try to address inconsistencies in this area in the revised VBER or vertical guidelines. The fact that the Commission has recently launched a call for proposals for the training of national judges in EU competition law confirms its concern to improve the coherence of implementation at national level. Market developments and, in particular, the growth of online sales and online platforms, which have changed the way companies provide and distribute goods and services, are of great importance for the assessment of eg. This shift to a digital economy has led to several problems with the operation of the VBER and has made it increasingly difficult for companies to evaluate their vertical agreements themselves with confidence. Margrethe Vestager, Vice-President in charge of competition policy, recognised that the rules need to be adapted so that they remain appropriate in a rapidly changing digital world5, which will certainly be a challenge for the EC in revising the rules. Purchasing offices: the Autorit√© examines commitment proposals* The Autorit√© de la concurrence has opened several investigations to examine joint purchasing agreements in the food retail trade. It has proposals for commitments related to the entre casino, Auchan, (…) On June 30, 2020, the Department of Justice (DOJ) and the Federal Trade Commission (the joint agencies) announced the release of new vertical merger guidelines (the new vertical guidelines or the 2020 vertical merger guidelines). The new vertical guidelines describe how agencies (…) The VDC defines the categories of vertical agreements exempted from the prohibition of anti-competitive agreements (Article 101 TFEU) on the basis that their restrictive effects on competition are outweighed by pro-competitive effects (in accordance with Article 101(3) TFEU). . .

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