Given that the rules on vertical agreement
are only reviewed once every 10 years, it is disappointing that the commission has not taken a more radical look at the way the rules operate in practice.
Ignoring the well-founded and substantiatedC* arguments submitted during the procedure, the CPC adopted the charge of supposed vertical agreement
between the company and its petrol stations," an EKO statement said.
But the court's response--shoehorning a vertical agreement
into a category of horizontal restraints traditionally considered per se illegal--establishes a dangerous precedent.
According to the CPC's statement, released yesterday, the companies were found to be guilty of both horizontal agreement (among themselves) and of vertical agreement
(between firms up or down the supply chain from one another).
3 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union to categories of vertical agreements
and concerted practices in the motor vehicle sector ( hereinafter referred to as block exemption 461/2010).
Among the greatest threats identified were vertical agreements
(with suppliers and competitors) and cartel behavior a distant second.
KZK concluded that the suppliers of bottled refined sunflower oil and their distributors had concluded vertical agreements
which hampered or restricted competition on the wholesale bottled sunflower oil market.
From June 2013 there will no longer be sector-specific regulations, and vertical agreements
will only be protected by Europe's general Block Exemption policy for all industries (330/2010).
To ensure certainty in the marketplace a Block Exemption was passed meaning the Act did not apply to vertical agreements
or land agreements.
These new provisions are the latest step in the European Commission's programme to update all competition law legislation and guidance and follow the new block exemption for vertical agreements
which came into force earlier this year.
2790/99 on the application of Article 81(3) of the Treaty to Vertical Agreements
and Concerted Practices7, OJ , L336/21.
They can also be analyzed in economic terms as a set of vertical agreements
whose precise terms and conditions influence both the efficiency of sporting competition (according to some agreed welfare criterion) and the distribution of rents between the participants.