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What’s new?

The Interchange Fees Regulation in a rapidly evolving payment landscape

Statement on ACM public consultation on sustainability guidelines

The European Commission takes note of the public consultation launched by the Dutch Competition Authority (“ACM”) on 9 July 2020, on its revised draft Guidelines on Sustainability agreements. The Commission fully supports the need for clear guidance on agreements aiming at reducing greenhouse gas emissions that would be compatible with competition law.

The aim of ACM’s the revision of the draft Guidelines on Sustainability agreements is to ensure that the competition rules do not stand in the way of agreements aiming at reducing greenhouse gas emissions. With this consultation, ACM is seeking the public’s view on its proposed approach including an interpretation of Article 101(3) of the Treaty of the Functioning of the European Union (TFEU) and its Dutch equivalent (Article 6(3) of the Dutch Competition Act) that would enable the ACM to balance any negative effects of anti-competitive behaviour for the consumers concerned (e.g. a price increase) against benefits incurred by the resulting reduction of greenhouse gas emissions – not only for the consumers buying the relevant products but also for the society as a whole.

The European Commission is currently looking into the same issues as part of the review of the two Horizontal Block Exemption Regulations and the Horizontal Co-operation Guidelines. In particular, the Commission, in line with the Commission’s Better Regulation requirements, ran a public consultation inviting stakeholders to comment on, amongst other things, the efficiency, effectiveness and relevance of the current regulations and the accompanying guidelines on horizontal co-operation agreements. In the framework of this review, some stakeholders have expressed similar views about the need to provide guidance on agreements on sustainability issues (including environmental issues). Contributions to the public consultation, together with a factual summary have been published on DG Competition’s website. The Commission will continue its reflections on these issues, both with external stakeholders and within the European Competition Network (ECN), to provide further clarity and arrive at a uniform approach.


The European Green Deal is our roadmap for making the EU's economy sustainable. We can achieve this by turning climate and environmental challenges into opportunities across all policy areas, including competition policy, and making the transition just and inclusive for all.

Antitrust rules and coronavirus

Antitrust: joint statement by the European competition authorities on the Corona crisis

Evaluation of the Commission Notice on the definition of relevant market for the purposes of Community competition law

EU competition rules rely on a common definition of terms, including the concepts of market definition. Market definition is a tool to identify and define the boundaries of competition between undertakings. The objective of defining a market in both its product and geographic dimension is to identify the actual competitors that are capable of constraining the commercial decisions of the undertakings concerned (such as their pricing decisions). It is from this perspective that the market definition makes it possible, among other things, to calculate market shares that would convey meaningful information for the purposes of assessing market power.
The Commission Notice on the definition of relevant markets has the purpose of providing guidance as to how the Commission applies the concept of relevant product and geographic market in competition law enforcement and therefore of increasing the transparency of the Commission’s policy and decision-making in the area of competition policy.
The Commission is now evaluating whether its 1997 Notice on market definition requires updating to ensure that it is accurate and up to date and that it sets out a clear and consistent approach to market definition in both antitrust and merger cases across different industries, in a way that is easily accessible.

Timeline for Mergers and Antitrust policy reviews 2019-2022

Review of the Vertical BER and the Vertical Guidelines (2018-2022)

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Case decisions and other documents adopted in the last three months.