Prague, Czechia

Bypassing Competition Law, Bypassing through Competition Law Ondrej Blažo Comenius University Bratislava Faculty of Law, Institute of European Law Šafárikovo nám. 6, Bratislava, 811 00 Slovakia e-mail:

Abstract The paper will assess the flexibility of concepts of competition law to cover unexpected spheres of societal goals and limits thereof and also the flexibility to cover areas that are claimed to be uncovered by competition law. There is understanding of competition protection as an economic concept and link to requests for legal “purity”. On the other hand, competition law can serve as an effective tool for solution of social and legal problems that were not originally aimed to be covered by competition law (e.g., data protection, foreign direct investment, development, and environmental agenda). And finally, in some areas it is claimed that competition law is not effective enough to protect the social purpose of market mechanism, e.g., B2B unfair trade practices, and therefore it is bypassed by specific legislation. The main risk of these type of bypasses is possible violation of ne bis in idem safeguard. Enforcement of non-competition policies via competition law confirms flexibility of competition law and its ability to accommodate other policies, such as horizontal policies or international trade defence Keywords: competition law, European Union law, horizontal policies, purpose 1. Introduction Although the European Union (EU) competition rules as well as national competition rules of the EUMember States deal with the same notions of agreements restricting competition, abuse of dominance or merger control and shall safeguard functioning of market economy, their actual legal and constitutional context can be different. Thus, the protection of competition is not a self-serving goal, it is rather a means to achieve social goods which can be differently described in economic constitutions in EU Member States or are not stipulated at all. of competition law, unfair trade practices JEL Classification: K210, K420, K320


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