Sabina Famirska: articles by this author

The principle of proportionality in public procurement

According to Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) case law and EC directives, the principle of proportionality and equal treatment must be observed when selecting contractors in public procurement proceedings. Clearly, the Public Procurement Office and National Appeals Chamber have an obligation to evaluate public procurement proceedings in terms of these principles. However, as complaints about breach of competition regulations in tenders are submitted to the president of the Office of Competition and Consumer Protection (UOKiK), it is not clear whether this institution is required to refer to these principles.

Supreme Court judgment will not benefit all cartel participants

A judgment of the Supreme Court overruling a decision of the president of the Office of Competition and Consumer Protection (UOKiK) does not apply to all participants in an agreement restricting competition. If a cassation appeal by one of them has been rejected or the Supreme Court has refused to accept it for examination, the case is irrevocably closed, regardless of how the proceedings continue and whether the decision of the president of UOKiK is ultimately upheld.

Harder to protect trade secrets in commercial relations

An amendment to the Polish Unfair Competition Act extends the legal protection given to trade secrets. But information known to or easily attainable for people in a particular sector or familiar with a particular subject will not constitute trade secrets even if the information is not disclosed to the general public. Labelling it “confidential” might not be sufficient.

Joint ventures can be risky

Creation of a joint venture by competitors, or obtaining joint control over a competing company through acquisition of its shares, may give rise to significant antitrust risks. Obtaining approval for the transaction from the competition authority may not ensure legal safety when competitors intend to pursue joint business initiatives.

Competition authority’s rules for calculating fines not binding courts

When ruling on the amount of a fine, courts should be guided by the principle of proportionality, meaning that the fine should be tied to the revenue generated on sales of products affected by unlawful practices by the seller…

Record fine for hindering competition investigation

In a decision issued on 4 November 2010, the Polish competition authority imposed a record fine of PLN 123 million on Polska Telefonia Cyfrowa sp. z o.o., operator of the Era mobile phone network, for hindering an inspection