Also this spring, we are sending you a list of our main blogs on competition law, market regulation, state aid and consumer law, to ensure that you are kept fully up to date.
The rise of platforms such as Amazon, Google and Facebook has revolutionised the way in which consumers buy products and sellers offer their products for sale. On the flip side, however, companies have become dependent on private parties that control the access to a market and the conditions that apply. These digital ‘gatekeepers’ have recently become subject to specific rules.
The supervision of mergers and acquisitions has also been further tightened. The European Court of Justice has ruled, for instance, that a national competition authority may retrospectively classify a merger or acquisition that does not come under the merger control rules as abuse of dominance. The European Commission has furthermore been given the power to review subsidies granted to companies by non-EU countries for their market-distorting effects. Also, the first experiences with supervision from a national security perspective of M&A transactions in the Netherlands are now known.
Enforcement of consumer law meanwhile remains a focal point at ACM. Among other things, as a result of the amended
Besluit prijsaanduiding producten
(Products (Price Indications) Decree), ACM is intensifying its supervision of fake discounts, to prevent consumers from being misled. A joint investigation by European consumer regulators into dark patterns has furthermore resulted in a call for stricter legislation on digital manipulative sales practices. How should online retailers deal with this development?
An express exemption from the cartel prohibition (Article 210a CMO) applies to the agri-food and retail sectors. The Commission published draft guidelines for this purpose this spring. Although the definitive guidelines are not expected until the end of this year, sustainability initiatives can now already benefit from the sustainability exemption. The focus on health and nutrition claims is also increasing. What should food producers and importers pay attention to in order to avoid fines being imposed by the
(Netherlands Food and Consumer Product Safety Authority)?
Healthcare contracting for 2024 has now also started. Our most important tip for healthcare providers is to make sure that they exercise their rights in good time. That will be beneficial in healthcare procurement later this year.
We hope you enjoy the read!