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Cover Jones & Sufrin's EU Competition Law

16. EU Competition Law and Policy in the Digital Economy  

Alison Jones, Brenda Sufrin, and Niamh Dunne

This chapter considers the application of the EU competition rules specifically within the digital economy. It considers: the competition dynamics that typically arise in digital markets; examples of competition enforcement in digital markets at EU level to date; and some of the enforcement challenges that arise, including the limited scope of application of the EU competition rules, the prevalence of novel or controversial theories of harm, and the speed of intervention and effectiveness of remedies that can be imposed. The chapter also explores efforts to augment the ordinary competition law framework in the digital context. In particular, it considers the provisions and implications of the Digital Markets Act, which imposes a series of prescriptive ex ante obligations on large digital gatekeepers.

Chapter

Cover Competition Law

4. Article 101(3)  

This chapter examines Article 101(3) of the Treaty of Functioning of the European Union (TFEU). Article 101(3) provides a ‘legal exception’ to the prohibition in Article 101(1) by providing that it may be declared inapplicable in respect of agreements, decisions or concerted practices, or of categories of agreements, decisions or concerted practices, that satisfy four conditions. After making some preliminary comments on the application of Article 101(3), this chapter discusses the four conditions in Article 101(3). It then considers the implications of Regulation 1/2003 for undertakings and their professional advisers, and in particular their need to ‘self-assess’ the application of Article 101(3) to agreements. The final section of this chapter describes the system of so-called ‘block exemptions’.