Block Exemption Regulation in the Motor Vehicle Sector (Regulation/Guidelines)
Vertical agreements are entered into by companies operating in the production or distribution chain at different levels. Such agreements are generally prohibited, however, the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union provides for exemptions from the general prohibition. The Commission decides whether or not an exemption is given. In its Block Exemption Regulation in the Motor Vehicle Sector (EC) No. 1400/2002 and its Guidelines, the Commission is presenting the conditions according to which an agreement is deemed in line with competition law. Said Regulation will expire on 31 May 2010. At the end of last December the Commission has submitted a follow-up Draft Regulation and Draft Guidelines.
A Block Exemption Regulation in the Motor Vehicle Sector increases legal certainty and releases companies and antitrust authorities from being subjected to individual scrutiny. As the trade in new motor vehicles will be subjected to the General Vertical Block Exemption in June 2013 manufacturers and distributors will be relieved from unnecessary burdens. On the aftermarket, too, there will be an increase in efficiency and individual freedom of choice for consumers, as the position of independent repairers will be strengthened.