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Public consultations

Draft proposal for a revised block exemption for technology transfer agreements and for revised guidelines

Policy field

Competition: Antitrust

Target group

Citizens, public authorities, organisations, and, in particular, the business community and their representatives as well as other stakeholders including industry associations and consumer interest associations who have had direct experience of applying the current rules on technology transfer agreements and/or who deal to a significant extent with licensing agreements for the transfer of technology.

Period of consultation

From 20.02.2013 to 17.05.2013

Objective of the consultation

In the meaning of the EU competition rules, a technology transfer agreement is a licensing agreement where one party (the licensor) authorises another party or parties, the licensee(s), to use its technology (patent, know-how, software license) for the production of goods and services.

The rules on how to assess technology transfer agreements are set out in two instruments, the technology transfer block exemption regulation ("TTBER") and accompanying Guidelines. The TTBER exempts certain categories of licensing agreements concluded between companies that have limited market power and that respect certain conditions set out in the TTBER. Such agreements are deemed to have no anticompetitive effects or, if they do, the positive effects outweigh the negative ones. The Guidelines provide guidance on the application of the TTBER as well as on the application of EU competition law to technology transfer agreements that fall outside the safe harbour of the TTBER.

These instruments will expire on 30 April 2014. The Commission has now drafted a proposal for a revised TTBER and Guidelines. The current consultation is seeking stakeholders' views on this proposal.

View the consultation documents

Reference documents and other, related consultations

Contact details

Responsible service:Directorate-General for Competition – Unit A1 - Antitrust Case Support and Policy
Please always indicate the reference number in your correspondence: HT. 2742
E-mail address for replies:

Postal address:
European Commission
Directorate-General for Competition
Antitrust Registry
1049 Bruxelles/Brussel
Fax (32-2) 295.01.28

If you have questions, please do not hesitate to contact us by email to or by phone: +32 229 52530.

Replies to the consultation

Overview of submissions received

Public authorities
  • Bundesministerium für Wirtschaft und Technologie und Bundeskartellamt en - de
  • Defence Intellectual Property Rights group of the United Kingdom Ministry of Defence en
  • Finnish Ministry of Employment and Economy fi
Registered organisations
  • Air Liquide fr
  • Alstom en
  • American Chamber of Commerce to the European Union en
  • Association française des entreprises privées (AFEP) fr
  • Bird & Bird en
  • Bundesverband der Deutschen Industrie de - en
  • CEFIC en
  • Deutsche Gesellschaft für Recht und Informatik de
  • Ericsson en
  • Eurotel en - it
  • France Telecom-Orange fr
  • German Association for the Protection of Intellectual Property (GRUR) en
  • Intellectual Property Lawyers Association and Law Society of England & Wales en
  • Intellectual Property Owners' Association en
  • IP Federation en
  • MEDEF & Le Cercle de l'Industrie en
  • Microsoft en
  • Pinsent Masons en
  • Qualcomm en
  • Technicolor en
  • TEVA en
  • VDMA European Office en - de
Non-registered organisations
  • American Bar Association en
  • Association of the British Pharmaceutical Industry en
  • Baker & McKenzie en
  • Blackberry en
  • City of London Law Society en
  • Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton en
  • Clifford Chance en
  • CropLife International en
  • economiesuisse en
  • Edwards Wildman Palmer en
  • France Brevets en
  • Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer en
  • Herbert Smith Freehills en
  • Hogan Lovells en
  • International Chamber of Commerce en
  • Licensing Executive Society en
  • Ligue Internationale du Droit et de la Commerce en
  • Norton Rose en
  • Philips en
  • PraxisUnico en
  • Shell International en
  • Simmons & Simmons en
  • UK BioIndustry Association en
  • UK Competition Law Association en
  • Université de Liège en
  • Walker Morris en
  • WilmerHale en
  • Wragge & Co en
Individual contributions
  • Patrick Rey & Jean Tirole en - annex en
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