School of Law

SOLM050 European Union Competition Law (Sem 1)

Module Description

The Module EU Competition Law (along with the co-requisite Module EU Competition Law and Practice) aims at a comprehensive study of the basic provisions of European Union (EU) competition law. The Module will provide participants with a flavour of the economic and market context in which EU competition law, especially Article 101 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union (TFEU) is applied. The Module will aim to consider an important business phenomenon in the market namely anti-competitive agreements. It is hoped that by the end of the Module participants will gain a solid understanding of the relevant competition rules of the EU whilst developing a good business and market perspective and practical approach in order to help them identify situations in which such phenomenon may arise and how should this phenomenon be addressed.

EU competition law is based on the rules contained in Articles 101-109 of the Treaty on The Functioning of the European Union (TFEU) and upon subsequent secondary legislation. The focus of the Module will be however on Articles 101 TFEU; as well as a number of block exemption Regulations, notably those dealing with: Vertical Restraints; Technology Transfer; and Horizontal Research and Development and Specialisation Agreements. The Module will however consider where relevant and appropriate other provisions of EU competition law, especially Article 102 TFEU.

EU competition rules are applied by the Directorate General (DG COMPETITION (COMP)) of the European Commission, the Directorate in charge of competition matters; there is also shared competence with designated national competition authorities (NCAs) in relation to the application of Articles 101 (and 102) TFEU. Decisions of the Commission are the principal means of enforcement in competition cases. The Commission’s decisions are subject to review by the General Court of the EU (GCEU) (formerly the Court of First Instance (CFI)) and the Court of Justice of the EU/European Court of Justice (CJEU/ECJ). This has created an extensive case-law in competition law matters and reference will be made to this case law.

In addition to considering substantive issues, the Module will also deal with relevant procedural mechanisms, such as cartel leniency and settlement mechanism.

Applicable Groupings

  • LLM in Commercial and Corporate Law
  • LLM in Competition Law
  • LLM in European Law
  • LLM in International Business Law

Mode of Assessment

3.15 hour examination

Credits

30 Credits