Preventing Innovative Cooperations: The Legal Exemptions Unintended Side Effect

In 2004, European competition law had been considerable changed by the introduction of the new Council Regulation No. 1/2003. One of the major renewals was the replacement of the centralized notification system for inter-company cooperations in favor of a so-called legal exemption system. We analyze the implications of this reform and its arising uncertainty on the agreements firms implement, especially on innovative agreements like vertical R&D agreements. By means of a decision theoretic approach, we show that the law’s intention to reduce the incentive to establish illegal cartels will be reached but innovating cooperations might be prevented. To avoid this unintended side effect, fines but not the monitoring activities should be increased.

13. October 2010

Authors Christian Growitsch Nicole Nulsch Margarethe Rammerstorfer

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