19 May 2016
The 8th meeting of the Sofia Competition Forum on 10 June 2016
The 8th meeting of the Sofia Competition Forum will take place on 10 June 2016 in Sofia. Invited participants include representatives from all SCF beneficiary countries, namely Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, Kosovo, Montenegro, Macedonia, Serbia and Georgia,as well as speakers from the UNCTAD Competition and Consumer Policies Branch, the OECD Competition Division, the Court of Justice of the European Union, European Commission, the competition agencies of Germany, Japan, France, Austria, Italy, Portugal, Slovenia, Russia, Ukraine and Turkey, renowned international experts on competition policy, representatives from academia and judiciary.
Following the publication of the SCF special project “Comparative overview of Balkan competition regimes”in 2014 and the SCF project on “Comparative overview of the Balkan competition regimes in the field of inspections on spot” in 2015 a number of topics for future discussion were outlined by the SCF beneficiaries. It was found that the issues on remedies and commitments are some of the most challenging for the members of the Forum and need to be studied in further detail. The eight edition of the Forum will be therefore dedicated to “Remedies and commitments in competition cases”.
The morning session of the seminar will be dedicated to opening speeches from the co-founders of the forum – UNCTAD and the Bulgarian CPC, a key note speech from the EU Commissioner Ms. Margrethe Vestager, as well as presentations from notable speakers from various jurisdictions. Special reference is to be made to high-level UNCTAD representative who will be coming to open the 8th meeting, Mr. Guillermo Valles, Director of International Trade in Goods and Services and Commodities Division of UNCTAD. The participants in the plenary session will share their views and experience and will discuss with the audience lots of important issues that could arise in the field of commitments and remedies such as the appropriate design of such remedial measures, their compliance with the principle of proportionality, the assessment of their effectiveness, the monitoring and ex-post evaluation of their implementation, as well as cooperation issues among different competition jurisdictions which are engaged in addressing competition concerns of cross-border nature.
Moreover, in the afternoon two breakout sessions will be organized in order to give the SCF beneficiaries the possibility to further discuss the related issues in more interactive manner. The first breakout session will be dedicated to ‘’Commitments vs. infringement decisions’ and the second one will cover the topic ‘Structural and behavioural remedies in antitrust and mergers’. All SCF beneficiaries will make presentations on the proposed topics with a view to present the state of play of their national legislations and practices in the respective field.
At the end of the eight meeting the preliminary findings of the SCF ongoing project on “Comparative overview of the SCF jurisdictions in the field of procedural fairness” will be presented. This project was initiated by the SCF members at the seventh meeting as a follow-up of the general comparative study and was based on a questionnaire that was replied by all SCF competition authorities. Besides, the next edition of the SCF Annual Bulletin 2016 will be also announced at the end of the Forum.