A (downloadable) compendium of cartel law
Few people read Judgments nowadays and much less cartel Judgments, in spite of these being the large majority of competition-related output on the part of EU Courts.
It is not difficult to keep track of developments in, let’s say 102, because precedents are scarce and manageable (i.e. one can easily identify any deviations in e.g. the law on refusal to deal, as there are only a handful of well-commented cases on it). But the exercise becomes practically impossible when it comes to cartels, as there are many more (lengthy and sometimes tedious) Judgments, concerning very fact-specific situations and because developments may come in various fronts (ranging from evidential issues, to parent-subsidiary relations, fining, leniency, settlements, etc).
Accordingly, in the course of the past few years in order to identify relevant developments in cartel law many people have relied on one main source of info: the yearly presentations on cartel case-law delivered by Fernando Castillo de la Torre (Commission’s Legal Service) at Les Mardis de la Concurrence a the Université Libre de Bruxelles (also repeated later internally at the Commission). I actually know of various cases where lawyers pleading before EU Courts had the slides in front of them…
The amount of work and knowledge that Fernando puts into reading and making sense out of the case law for no other reason than openly sharing the information is admirable, and perplexing if one considers that he left the Legal Service’s competition team already a few years ago. And what borders with the paranormal is that he’s also got it all in his head and could recite by memory a large chunk of the content of the presentations, including case number and paragraph (I have actually seen that happening in Court).
The problem with those presentations was that, until now, they only were available in the gray market; one needed to know somebody who knew somebody who had registered for the talk and had received the materials.
In order to address this market failure, we have asked Fernando whether we could make available the presentations from the past few years, and he didn’t hesitate to accept.
Here they are: