Procedural Rights and Obligations of Third Parties in Antitrust Investigations and Proceedings by the European Commission
published in World Competition, Volume 45, Issue 1, March 2022, pp. 3-52
58 Pages Posted: 29 Nov 2021 Last revised: 5 May 2022
Date Written: November 1, 2021
This paper provides a systematic overview of the procedural rights and obligations of third parties in investigations and proceedings conducted by the European Commission for the enforcement of Articles 101 and 102 TFEU. Third parties are all natural or legal persons, undertakings and associations of undertakings other than those under investigation. The paper examines the possibilities for third parties to inform the European Commission about a suspected infringement and to trigger an investigation by the European Commission; the obligations and rights of third parties when responding to requests for information sent to them by the European Commission, when participating in interviews, and when submitting to inspections conducted by the European Commission; the possibilities for third parties to obtain information about pending proceedings and to express their views in them; the rules on the use of languages; and the protection of business secrets and other confidential information, and the restrictions on the use of information obtained by third parties through their participation in the European Commission’s proceedings.
Keywords: antitrust, competition enforcement, European Commission, third parties, procedure
JEL Classification: K21, K42
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation