Abusive Practices in Competition Law
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Abusive Practices in Competition Law

Edited by Fabiana Di Porto and Rupprecht Podszun

Abusive Practices in Competition Law tackles the difficult questions presented to competition lawyers and economists regarding abusive practices: where and when is the red line crossed in competitive advances? When is a company explicitly dominant? How do you handle those who hold superior bargaining power over others but are not classed as dominant?
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Chapter 5: Exploitative prices in European competition law

Antonio Robles Martín-Laborda

Abstract

In European competition law it has been considered that ‘unfair prices’, as it is used in Article 102(a) TFEU, should not only include exclusionary high prices, but also prices which, without reinforcing it, represent a mere exercise of the market power legitimately acquired by the dominant firm. This chapter analyses the case law of the European Court of Justice on these ‘exploitative prices’ and suggests that, given the legal uncertainty of the prohibition, its economic and institutional flaws and the conceptual contradictions that it entails, regulating the prices of monopolists should be done ex ante and left to government or sector-specific regulators. The prohibition of ‘unfair prices’ should be interpreted by competition authorities as referring merely to exclusionary prices.

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