The Limitation of Intellectual Property in the Name of Competition

26 Pages Posted: 11 Jun 2011

See all articles by Paul Nihoul

Paul Nihoul

Université Catholique de Louvain

Date Written: January 11, 2008


Intellectual property (“IP”) is often credited with providing an incentive for inventors to develop their creativity. Through IP protection, inventors can recoup their investment and make a profit. That idea, which has inspired legislators worldwide, is currently challenged in the European case law on competition. In the last twenty years, five cases have limited, in the name of competition, the possibility for firms to use IP rights acquired in conformity with applicable laws. These cases are examined in this Article. We analyze the scope of the emerging jurisprudence, and we investigate the arguments articulated, in support of their position, by the European instances involved.

Keywords: Intellectual property, competition law, antitrust, European law, abuse of dominant position, Article 102 TFUE

JEL Classification: D4, K21, L12, L43, L41, O34

Suggested Citation

Nihoul, Paul, The Limitation of Intellectual Property in the Name of Competition (January 11, 2008). Fordham International Law Journal, Vol. 32, Nos. 2&3, p. 489, 2009, Available at SSRN:

Paul Nihoul (Contact Author)

Université Catholique de Louvain ( email )

Place Montesquieu, 3
Louvain-la-Neuve, 1348

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