C-352/13 Cartel Damage Claims (CDC) Hydrogen Peroxide was the CJEU’s first judgment on the application of the Brussels I Regulation (44/2001) to competition damages claims. The case fell to be decided in the context of the EU’s various new measures to encourage private enforcement. The Advocate General was not convinced that this policy focus could be reflected in Brussels I – he considered that the Regulation was “not fully geared towards ensuring effective private implementation of the Union’s competition law” (at ). However, the CJEU embraced the challenge, and provided an interpretation of Brussels I that will do much to encourage private enforcement. Continue reading
Category Archives: Conflicts
It is again time for a round-up of recent competition law developments which have caught our attention.
Most attention-grabbing of all was the European Commission’s genius/bizarre/inexplicable decision to publish a comic book which is probably best described as a bureaucrat’s fantasy. A young Commission official (Thomas) starts talking to a beautiful woman (Chloe) in an airport departure lounge. Instead of ignoring his slightly creepy advances, Chloe turns out to want nothing more than to hear about the Commission’s antitrust work. Indeed, when Thomas false-modestly suggests that he might be boring her, she insists she wants to hear more:
The Court of Appeal handed down two important decisions last week on the application of conflict of law principles to cartel follow-on damages claims: Deutsche Bahn AG & Ors v Morgan Advanced Materials plc & Ors  EWCA Civ 1484 and Ryanair Limited v Esso Italiana Srl  EWCA Civ 1450. The defendants in each case challenged the jurisdiction of the English courts to hear damages claims arising from their cartel activities. Continue reading
Subsidiaries as “branches” for undertakings: a new route to jurisdiction under Article 5(5) of the Brussels Regulation?
Stand alone, follow on and hybrid damages claims arising out of multijurisdictional cartels are generating some of the most novel and interesting current problems in conflicts of laws, both in relation to issues of jurisdiction and applicable law. On the jurisdictional side conventional wisdom has it that there are three main routes by which Claimants can seize English jurisdiction.
First, you can find a so-called “Anchor Defendant” that is a cartelist (and it must be an addressee cartelist if in the CAT so long as Mersen is good law) domiciled here, against which you can proceed as of right under Article 2 of the Brussels Regulation. Then you can bring in other cartelists under Article 6 (i.e. a defendant against whom the claim is closely connected to that against the anchor defendant such that determining them together avoids the risk of irreconcilable judgments). Where the Anchor Defendant is an addressee of the decision this tactic is unproblematic. Continue reading