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Competition law update

Daniel Beard and Tim Ward explore: New Procedural Regulation; investigative powers; nnational powers under the new Procedural Regulation; and merger control


7 March 2003

You may be a little embarrassed you did not send a card, but it was a relatively quiet celebration, so you would be forgiven for missing it. Council reg 17/62/EEC – the Regulation that gave us European competition law – was 40 last year. While Arts 81 and 82 of the EC Treaty set out the substantive rules at the heart of EC competition law (and, pursuant to the Competition Act 1998, UK competition law), reg 17 put a procedural framework around those provisions. But to describe reg 17 as ‘procedural’ understates its importance. It sets out a detailed code which governs the Commission’s approach to the enforcement of competition law. Regulation 17 is the engine which makes EC competition law go. So, how is EC competition law running as it heads into middle age? While you might think 40 years is long enough to sort the subject out, in fact there is something of a rejuvenation going on. Indeed, reg 17 has a son: Council reg (EC) No 1/2003 of 16 December 2002 on the implementa...

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