Competition Alert October 2020


Projected reform of the European competition law vertical restraints regime.  The European Commission’s Working Document and next steps at a glance.

Review of VBER. The European Commission (EC) recently published its Staff Working Document containing its findings on the evaluation the Vertical Block Exemption Regulation (VBER) and its Guidelines. The VBER, which provides a safe harbor for contractual restraints (for instance between suppliers and distributors), is due to expire on 31 May 2022 and the EC initiated in 2018 a revision process to assess whether to let the VBER lapse, prolong its duration or revise it. During this first evaluation phase the EC has gathered evidence from various sources (businesses and their advisors, consumer bodies and national competition authorities) on the functioning of the VBER and its Guidelines.

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