21 December 2005

Competition: Technology Transfer Block Exemption

I have written and uploaded a brand new new article on the technology transfer block exemption which came into force on 1 May 2004 and is due to remain in place for 10 years. This new block exemption repeals and replaces the previous technology transfer block exemption (Regulation (EC) No 240/96).

This is the first of the new style post Reg 17 block exemptions. Unlike the previous ones it does not serve as a model contract with "white" permitted clauses. It does, however, have a list of what used to be called "black" clauses save that they are now called "hardcore" and "excluded" restrictions. As I said in yesterday's post on the modernization regulation, much of the point of a block exemption has been removed with the abolition of the requirement to notify and the power of national competition authorities as well as the Commission to revoke an exemption.

While on the subject of competition law, there are two interesting new additions to DG Competition's website. One is a green paper on damages for infringing EC antitrust law. The Commission wants a response by 21 April 2006. There are some useful links to some speeches by Neelie Kroes, research papers and other materials on the DG's press release. The other addition is the Annual Report on Competition Policy which weighs in at over 200 pages.

I have now nearly completed my update on competition law for the IP/it-Update website. Tomorrow I shall tie up some case notes with a short introduction to contracts in restraint of trade.

Merry Christmas!

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