Dr Antoni Bolecki: articles by this author
One method companies have of dealing with the crisis is to cooperate with their rivals. But before entering into such cooperation, it is worth examining whether it constitutes a conspiracy subject to sanctions from the national competition authority, the European Commission or other antitrust bodies.
From 1 June 2020 the regulations on prohibited contractual provisions (abusive clauses), so far applicable only to consumers, will in certain situations also apply to sole traders. This change will generate many practical problems.
A new regulation, Art. 385(5) of the Civil Code, enters into force on 1 June 2020. It expands the application of provisions on abusive clauses to cover sole traders. This provision may have repercussions under the Contractual Advantage Act. The competition authority may treat the use of abusive clauses by an entity holding a contractual advantage in contracts with sole traders as abuse of a contractual advantage.
A competition compliance programme should protect an undertaking against commission of violations prosecuted by the competition authority. This applies to anticompetitive arrangements between competitors, or between suppliers and distributors, as well as abuse of a dominant position. Such infringements are threatened by punishment of up to 10% of an undertaking’s annual turnover.
Contemporary competition law is built on two pillars: faith in the liberal market economy and faith in economic analysis. But in many countries in the West, including Poland, this faith is clearly dying. How will competition law look in the third decade of the 21st century, and will the current situation inevitably lead to changes in the principles governing enforcement of competition law?
Manufacturers like to exert an influence over the manner in which their products are sold by distributors. But excessive interference in online sales by a distributor may be found to be an illegal anti-competitive arrangement.