Procedural Autonomy of Member States and the EU Rights of Defence in Antitrust Proceedings
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The general rule concerning the application of EU law in the Member States is that, unless the procedural issues are directly regulated in EU primary or secondary law, the Member States possess a so-called ‘procedural autonomy’. This rule applies fully to national antitrust proceedings, where the presumed infringement may affect trade between EU Member States (decentralised EU antitrust proceedings). However, the procedural guarantees offered to undertakings in EU antitrust proceedings before the European Commission, often referred to the undertakings’ ‘rights of defence’, also form a part of the procedural acquis of EU law. This article examines the question whether that procedural acquis, stemming mainly from EU courts’s jurisprudence and formulated with regard to the proceedings before the European Commission, should be applied as a standard in national (i.e. Polish) antitrust proceedings where EU law applies.
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