Freight News, Sea

Commission consults on shipping consortia

[ February 27, 2014   //   ]

The European Commission is inviting comments on a proposal to continue the consortia block exemption regulation that exempts liner shipping consortia from EU antitrust rules. The current regulation is due to expire in April 2015.

According to the Commission, if consortia are faced with sufficient competition and are not used to fix prices or share the market, customers usually benefit from improvements in productivity and service quality. The Commission has therefore exempted such agreements from EU competition rules, provided that they do not exceed a certain market share.

The first consortia block exemption Regulation was adopted in 1995 and prolonged several times and, says the Commission, the latest market investigation, in 2013, showed that the main tenets of the Commission’s approach are still valid. But for consortia and alliances exceeding the market share foreseen in the block exemption regulation, the Commission will continue to closely monitor market developments and the conduct of companies to ensure that markets remain open and competitive.

Comments are invited by 31 March 2014. The draft Regulation is available at:


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