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Commission Proposal for a Directive to Empower NCAs to be More Effective Enforcers

European Commission, Proposal, March 2017

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The European Commission has proposed new rules to enable Member States’ competition authorities to be more effective enforcers of EU antitrust rules. The proposal seeks to make sure they have all the tools they require to achieve this.

The European Commission and Member States’ national competition authorities work closely on enforcing the EU antitrust rules in the framework of the European Competition Network (ECN). This network underpins the coherent application of the EU antitrust rules by all enforcers. Since 2004, the Commission and national competition authorities have adopted over 1000 decisions, investigating a broad range of cases in all sectors of the economy. From 2004 till 2014, over 85% of all the decisions that applied EU antitrust rules were taken by national competition authorities.

The proposal by the Commission is intended to further empower the Member States’ competition authorities. It aims to ensure that when applying the same legal basis national competition authorities have the appropriate enforcement tools, in order to bring about a genuine common competition enforcement area.