Horizontal And Vertical Agreements Related To Competition Legislation

Any horizontal or green green agreement, for which no class exemption is granted, must be reviewed by the parties themselves to determine whether the agreement is anti-competitive. To support this approach, the European Commission has published guidelines (see guidelines on vertical restrictions) on the main factors to be considered. Among the measures that could fall under these prohibitions for vertical agreements are: the table below mentions a specific text in European jurisprudence and an ag opinion on the differences between horizontal and vertical agreements. If the class exemption for vertical agreements does not apply to an agreement, it may continue to be allowed, notwithstanding the prohibitions of Chapter I or Section 101, where the benefits of the agreement outweigh the anti-competitive effects. With regard to vertical agreements, the main exemption by EU category is the category exemption for vertical agreements, which excludes many vertical agreements from the prohibitions covered in Chapter I and Article 101 (see exemption by category for vertical agreements). While the agreement in question may be subject to another EU group exemption, the category exemption does not apply to vertical agreements. Other common class exemptions include category exemption for motor vehicles, category exemption for technology transfer, category exemption for research and development, and category exemption for specialization agreements. Competition law, its exceptions and detailed provisions are complex and commercial law advice should be sought where there is a risk of competition issues at national or European level. Careful consideration of trade relations between the parties concerned and specific drafting can significantly reduce the likelihood that an agreement will be considered a violation of competition rules. An important proposition underpinning EU competition law is that competing companies should act independently in the markets. In principle, rivalry and competition can be expected to ensure the greatest consumer well-being, the most efficient allocation of resources and contribute to further overall market integration within the FRAMEWORK of the EU`s internal market project. The European Commission and other regulatory authorities are therefore cautious about agreements that could curb competition or reduce economic uncertainty that would otherwise exist between competitors.

Some of the most common horizontal cooperation agreements on the market include information exchange, joint procurement agreements and research and development agreements. [4] On the other hand, some of the most common vertical cooperations include restrictions on distribution, franchising and resale prices. [5] NERA`s cartel and dominance abuse experts have assessed the economic reasons and effects of horizontal and vertical agreements around the world. In the United States, nera experts analyzed the competitive effects of agreements in sectors as diverse as feed, soft drinks, software, industrial products, coal and franchising (for example. B, restaurants, tools and professional sport).