Frontier speaks on the state of private enforcement in France and in the EU

Frontier speaks on the state of private enforcement in France and in the EU

Luís Campos, Manager in the Competition Practice at Frontier Economics, spoke today at the Concurrences conference on private enforcement that was held at the Paris Court of Appeals. Drawing on Frontier’s extensive experience in private enforcement and follow-on damages work, Luís provided an economist’s perspective on the different types of damages that may be compensated in such proceedings as well as the challenges associated with estimating them. Irène Luc (Paris Court of Appeals) and Sylvain Justier (Magenta) were the other two panellists alongside Luís. The panel was moderated by David Bosco (Aix-Marseille Université).

Throughout the conference, speakers from legal, academic and institutional backgrounds discussed the current state of private enforcement in the EU and in particular, the stipulations of the Damages Directive and its transposition into French competition law. Luís highlighted three challenges :

  • Although the methodology used to quantify cartel related damages is well established, Luís emphasised that its application to cases should reflect the specific features of the relevant sector as well as the constraints associated with the information available. This implies that large econometric exercises are not always possible or even advisable.
  • No similar common accepted methodology exists to quantify damages arising from other abuses of dominance, such as exclusionary practices. There is often no reliable “real life” comparator that would help inform the strategy of the claimant or suggest its likely relative success. Therefore, both the methodology and its application will need to be informed by the specific features of the market and the infraction.
  • The experience of the judge is, in such cases, key to ensuring that the right level and type of data is requested to the Parties at each point in the process, so as to avoid excessive data disclosure costs or delays.
    Concurrences is a quarterly peer-reviewed journal that is released to discuss national and EU competition laws.

Frontier regularly advises clients in establishing or defending allegations of abuse of dominance and other competition matters before the courts, and in follow-on actions after competition authorities have made decisions.

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