Publications of Nicolas Petit
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See detailThe Judgement of the European Court of Justice in VEBIC:Filling a Gap in Regulation 1/2003
Petit, Nicolas ULiege

in Journal of European Competition Law and Practice (2011)

In VEBIC, the Court of Justice of the EU clarifies the prerogatives of National Competition Authorities under Regulation 1/2003 and paves the way towards regulatory reform in Belgium

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See detailThe Judgment of the European Court of Justice in VEBIC: Filling a Gap in Regulation 1/2003
Petit, Nicolas ULiege

in Journal of European Competition Law and Practice (2011), 2(4), 340-344

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See detailThe Economics of Parallel Trade – Econ-oclast Views on a Dogma of EU Competition Law
Petit, Nicolas ULiege

in Govaere, Inge; Quick, R.; Bronckers, Mario (Eds.) Trade and Competition Law in The EU and Beyond, Edward Elgar Publishing (2011)

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See detailDroit de la concurrence et instrumentalisation parisitaire
Petit, Nicolas ULiege; Neyrinck, Norman ULiege

in Roquilly, Christophe (Ed.) La contribution des juristes et du droit à la performance de l'entreprise (2011)

This paper explore whether, and to what extent, firms can instrumentalize the competition rules to free ride on others’ efforts. We come to the conclusion that attempts to free ride through Article 101 ... [more ▼]

This paper explore whether, and to what extent, firms can instrumentalize the competition rules to free ride on others’ efforts. We come to the conclusion that attempts to free ride through Article 101 TFEU allegations are likely to fail. In contrast, Article 102 TFEU offers a more promising legal avenue to wanna-be free riders. [less ▲]

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See detailTying Law in Microsoft I and II: The Secret Art of Magic?
Petit, Nicolas ULiege; Neyrinck, Norman ULiege

E-print/Working paper (2010)

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See detailJudicial Review in European Union Competition Law: A Quantitative and Qualitative Assessment
Petit, Nicolas ULiege; geradin, Damien

E-print/Working paper (2010)

Ever since the creation of the General Court (“GC”), the effectiveness of judicial review in European Union (“EU”) competition cases has sparked intense scholarly debates. This paper seeks to further ... [more ▼]

Ever since the creation of the General Court (“GC”), the effectiveness of judicial review in European Union (“EU”) competition cases has sparked intense scholarly debates. This paper seeks to further contribute to this discussion in three ways. First, it devotes some space to fundamental, yet often overlooked questions, such as the goals or functions of judicial review and why judicial review of administrative decisions is important; particularly so in competition law matters. Second, this paper attempts to throw some empirical light on the GC’s judicial review of European Commission (“Commission”) decisions in the field of competition law. Third, it places a specific emphasis on the particular situation of abuse of dominance law, where the GC has exercised its judicial review power with more restraint than in other areas of competition law (such as restrictive agreements and mergers). With these goals in mind, this paper follows a five-stage progression. First, on the basis of a survey of the relevant legal, economic and political science literature, it defines the functions of judicial review and identifies a set of indicators which can be used to assess the performance of the GC’s judicial scrutiny (Part I). Second, it explains why judicial review in EU competition law cases is of critical importance notably given the institutional and procedural deficiencies of the EU enforcement structure (Part II). Third, it discusses the nature and standard of review currently applied by the GC with a particular focus on the degree to which the GC is willing to review “complex economic matters” (Part III). Fourth, it provides some quantitative data on the case-law of the GC to assess whether several goals or functions attributed to judicial review by the scientific literature are met (Part IV). Finally, this paper takes a closer look at the (controversial) case-law of the GC in the field of Article 102 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union (“TFEU”) (Part V). [less ▲]

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See detailRemedies for Coordinated Effects under the EU Merger Regulation
Petit, Nicolas ULiege

in Competition Law International (2010), 6(2), 29-37

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See detailRemedies for Coordinated Effects under the EU Merger Regulation
Petit, Nicolas ULiege

in Competition Law International (2010), 6(2), 29-37

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See detailThe Economics of Parallel Trade – Iconoclast Views on a Dogma of EU Competition Law
Petit, Nicolas ULiege

E-print/Working paper (2010)

This paper attempts to demonstrate that whilst parallel trade (also referred to as “grey market trade” in the United States, or as “arbitrage” in economic theory) in the European Union is subject to a ... [more ▼]

This paper attempts to demonstrate that whilst parallel trade (also referred to as “grey market trade” in the United States, or as “arbitrage” in economic theory) in the European Union is subject to a remarkably favourable legal regime, the economic case supporting this approach remains to be made. To this end, it shows that the position of the EU Courts, and more generally of the EU institutions, is far from unquestionable in light of the relevant economic literature. [less ▲]

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See detailThe Past Clouds the Future of Europe’s New Antitrust Enforcer
Petit, Nicolas ULiege

Article for general public (2010)

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See detailEditorial - Antitrust in the Energy Sector
Petit, Nicolas ULiege

in Oil, Gas and Energy Law (2010), 8

This Special OGEL issue on "Antitrust in the energy sector" is devoted to the challenges arising from the implementation of the antitrust laws across various energy sectors. While this Special spans a ... [more ▼]

This Special OGEL issue on "Antitrust in the energy sector" is devoted to the challenges arising from the implementation of the antitrust laws across various energy sectors. While this Special spans a range of countries, its primary focus is on the European Union ("EU") and the United States ("US"). [less ▲]

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See detailA Review of the Competition Law Implications of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union
Petit, Nicolas ULiege; Neyrinck, Norman ULiege

in CPI Antitrust Journal (2010), 1

A review of the modifications brought to competition law by the Lisbon Treaty.

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See detailLe droit européen de la concurrence au banc des accusés
Petit, Nicolas ULiege

in Revue de la Faculté de Droit de l'Université de Liège (2010), (2),

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See detailHow Much Discretion do, and should, Competition Authorities enjoy in the Course of their Enforcement Activities? A Multi-Jurisdictional Assessment
Petit, Nicolas ULiege

in Concurrences (2010), (1), 44-62

The purpose of this study is to assess whether competition agencies (“CAs”) do, and in turn should, enjoy an unfettered discretionary power in the context of the investigation of competition law ... [more ▼]

The purpose of this study is to assess whether competition agencies (“CAs”) do, and in turn should, enjoy an unfettered discretionary power in the context of the investigation of competition law infringements or whether their margin of discretion should be subject to certain limits. To this end, it focuses on four successive areas where CAs may be entitled to make choices, i.e. detection of infringements, selection of enforcement targets, initiation of infringement proceedings and outcome of the case. Thanks to reports received from 21 national experts in response to a questionnaire covering 18 jurisdictions, the present study formulates a number of public policy proposals. [less ▲]

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See detailL'émancipation du Conseil de la Concurrence? Note sous la décision du Conseil de la concurrence du 26 mai 2009 dans l'affaire Base/BMB
Petit, Nicolas ULiege; Provost, Elise ULiege

in Tijdschrift voor Belgische Mededinging (2010), (2), 89-101

Enième avatar de la bataille juridique opposant les opérateurs alternatifs de communications électroniques à l’ancien monopole public Belgacom1, la décision commentée constitue une première pour Conseil ... [more ▼]

Enième avatar de la bataille juridique opposant les opérateurs alternatifs de communications électroniques à l’ancien monopole public Belgacom1, la décision commentée constitue une première pour Conseil de la concurrence (« le Conseil ») à plus d’un titre : première condamnation de l’opérateur historique, première caractérisation d’un ciseau tarifaire abusif, première décision infligeant une amende aussi élevée en Belgique. Après des années de carence dans l’application des règles de concurrence au secteur des communications électroniques le Conseil parait vouloir renverser la vapeur. Sonne peut-être – comme nous l’avons écrit précédemment – la « fin de la récréation pour l’opérateur historique ». Il faut sans doute s’en féliciter, la Belgique figurant depuis longtemps parmi les mauvais élèves de l’ouverture à la concurrence des industries de réseaux. [less ▲]

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See detailBehavioral Economics and Abuse of Dominance: A Proposed Alternative Reading of the Article 102 TFEU Case-Law
Petit, Nicolas ULiege; Neyrinck, Norman ULiege

in Global Competition Law Centre Working Papers Series (2010), (02/2010),

Behavioral economics has become a popular field of study. With the reconsideration of the homo economicus paradigm, psychology and sociology have infiltrated economic theory. More recently, several ... [more ▼]

Behavioral economics has become a popular field of study. With the reconsideration of the homo economicus paradigm, psychology and sociology have infiltrated economic theory. More recently, several commentators have argued in favor of an incorporation of behavioral economics within antitrust law. This paper argues, however, that EU competition law already integrates the findings of behavioral economics. A review of the Article 102 TFUE case-law reveals that contrary to the more conservative approach adopted by US agencies and courts, EU competition authorities already acknowledge the boundaries and biases of economic agents, and take into account the limits of the rationality assumption whilst drafting their decisions. [less ▲]

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See detailEnquêtes sectorielles: complément ou substitut de l'action des autorités de concurrence? Le "couteau suisse" du droit européen de la concurrence?
Petit, Nicolas ULiege; Lousberg, Charlotte ULiege

in Concurrences (2010), (2), 19-28

The present article seeks to determine whether sector inquiries are a “substitute” or a "complement” to conventional competition enforcement techniques. The analysis shows that not unlike a “Swiss knife” ... [more ▼]

The present article seeks to determine whether sector inquiries are a “substitute” or a "complement” to conventional competition enforcement techniques. The analysis shows that not unlike a “Swiss knife”, sector inquiries constitute a convenient, multifunctional tool, which serves a variety of purposes. Sector inquiries indeed entitle the Commission to (i) lower the minimal procedural requirements which must be met to launch investigations; (ii) extend the substantive scope of its inquiries beyond mere infringements to Article 101 and 102 TFEU; and (iii) incentivize firms to spontaneously comply with the antitrust rules. In light, however, of a number of shortcomings arising from the Commission’s sector inquiries’ practice, this article formulates several “best practices” (which are also relevant for other competition authorities with similar powers). [less ▲]

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See detailWhy the EU Merger Regulation should not enjoy a Monopoly over Tacit Collusion
Petit, Nicolas ULiege; Henry, David

in Krasnodebska-Tomkiel (Ed.) Changes in Competition policy over the last two Decades (2010)

Over the past two decades, the European Commission (“the Commission”) has adopted a stance whereby the implementation of ex ante, structural merger rules is deemed more appropriate when seeking to ... [more ▼]

Over the past two decades, the European Commission (“the Commission”) has adopted a stance whereby the implementation of ex ante, structural merger rules is deemed more appropriate when seeking to challenge tacit collusion than ex post, behavioural instruments (e.g. on the basis of Article 102 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the EU (“TFEU”). As a result, the EU merger regulation (“EUMR”) is the preferred, if not sole, legal instrument deployed by the Commission in order to avert any potential risk of tacit collusion. Since the entry into force of the EUMR, the number of Commission decisions in which the future emergence of risks of collective dominance was examined lies in the region of 130. In stark contrast, and despite pronouncements of the General Court (“GC”, or the Court) that Article 102 TFEU may apply to tacit collusion, the Commission has not yet taken a single decision enforcing Article 102 TFEU against tacitly collusive oligopolies. Similarly, the stillness of the 2009 Guidance Communication on Enforcement Priorities in applying Article 102 TFEU in this context implicitly confirms the Commission’s reluctance to use the abuse of dominance rules in order to address the phenomenon of tacit collusion. Overall, within the realm of EU competition law, the provisions of the EUMR de facto enjoy a jurisdictional monopoly over issues pertaining to collective dominance. The present article challenges the conventional view that tacit collusion should be exclusively addressed through the use of the EUMR. To this end, it examines and seeks to set straight five widespread misconceptions on which such view is based. [less ▲]

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See detailFrom formalism to effects? The Commission's Communication on enforcement priorities in applying article 82 EC
Petit, Nicolas ULiege

in World Competition: Law and Economics Review (2009), 32

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