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General Court partially annuls Commission Slovak Telekom Decision

14/12/18

On 13 December 2018, the EU General Court reduced a joint fine imposed on Slovak Telekom and its parent, Deutsche Telekom, for abuse of dominance by almost €12 million.  Slovak Telekom was fine for an abuse of a dominant position by refusing to give access to its local loop network and imposing a margin squeeze.  In the case of Slovak Telekom the fine was reduced because the Commission had failed to establish an abusive margin squeeze during the first year of the abuse (2005).  Deutsche Telekom’s fine was reduced for various reasons but the General Court considered that, overall, it was unjust to fine the parent company – who was not involved in the infringement – more than the subsidiary.  The judgment contains some interesting observations on how ex post competition law applies in conjunction with ex ante regulation and the scope of the CJEU rulings in Bronner and TeliaSonera.

The judgment is here.

Robert O'Donoghue QC acted for Slovak Telekom