Working Paper No. 05-09:
Modernization of European Antitrust Enforcement: The Economics of Regulatory Competition

Author(s):

Ben Depoorter, Francesco Parisi

Date Posted: 2005

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Abstract:

In this article we analyze the expected effects of regulatory overlap in European competition law resulting from Regulation 1/2003. Drawing upon recently developed economic theories of regulatory competition, our model foresees a number of qualitative adjustments resulting from this reform. On one hand, the direct applicability of the exemption provision should increase the overall amount of exemptions. On the other hand, a decentralized system permits private litigants' forum shopping, and parallel enforcement by multiple national competition authorities will drive up the number of infringement findings. Although the precise direction of substantive competition law is unclear, the overall effect is higher levels of regulatory activity. This entails not only greater administrative costs but also suggests increased transaction costs for doing business in the post-Regulation 1/2003 European Union.