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EFPIA Statement on the European Court of Justice Lundbeck Ruling

EFPIA regrets the General Court of the European Union’s decision to uphold the European Commission’s classification of the Lundbeck patent settlement agreements as restrictions of competition “by object” thereby judging them to be unlawful.

Today’s ruling runs contrary to recent case law from the European Court of Justice, which states categorically that the concept of a restriction “by object” – a restriction that by its very nature is presumed to have a negative effect on competition – must be interpreted narrowly, taking into account the specific economic and regulatory context (Case C-67/13, Cartes Bancaires). The Court indicates that the Commission has satisfied this test by virtue of “the broad logic of the contested decision” but at the same time finds that the Commission is not required to fully assess “a specific category of an agreement in a particular sector”.

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