Chillin'Competition

Relaxing whilst doing Competition Law is not an Oxymoron

Interesting statements

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The past few days have left us some interesting statements on the competition front. Here’s a personal selection. Happy to add any others any of you might have.

A) The French Industry Minister said last week that EU’s competition rules are “stupid and counter-productive“. I can understand part of the point, but the view that ”Europe organized the balkanization of its companies by chasing down state aid” is peculiar, given that the State aid control regime seeks precisely to eliminate barriers to inter-State trade. As put by José Luis Buendía in another often quoted statement, “State aid ‘DNA’ shares more chromosomes with internal market rules than with antitrust rules“.

This disrespect towards misunderstanding of competition law seems to be a non-partisan feature of French politics. Many of you might remember Sarkozy’s comments about endive producers not being Apple or Microsoft (see here) (the statement was not without consequences: it led our friend Mark English to stop wrapping his iPhone in ham).

B) Slow, ignorant’ lawyers charge by the hour to inflate bills, says President of British Supreme Court. A statement that adds up to a controversy we’ve often echoed regarding billable hours (see our previous post “Is associate lawyer the unhappiest job?“)

C) Have law blogs surpassed law reviews? That’s not really a statement, but rather an interesting (and interested) read.

D) The tone of the comments regarding Google’s proposed commitments has increased and reached new heights. A few days ago, an “anonymous” (no wonder!) lawyer representing one of the complainants said: “All we have to go on at the moment  is what Almunia has said and it is absolutely not encouraging. Putting lipstick on a pig does not mean it is not a pig (…). “It’s starting to look like he just wants to get a deal before his term as Commissioner is up next year.”

Written by Alfonso Lamadrid

29 October 2013 at 6:44 pm

One Response

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  1. José Luis Buendía´s quote on State Aid DNA has become a frequently cited, even in the “Manual de Derecho de la Competencia” (excellent book), which you co-wrote along Luis Ortiz, Jerónimo Maíllo and Pablo Ibáñez. With Competition Law being a complex subject, it´s not only how much you know but how “user-friendly” you put it. Mr. Buendía excels at that. BTW, great, and funny, blog.

    Borja

    31 October 2013 at 12:39 pm


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