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Study reveals leniency applications have not dropped

October 17, 2018, Global Competition Review

Global Competition Review featured the results of a joint survey conducted by Covington and the Brussels School of Competition on immunity and leniency applications. The survey revealed the majority of competition experts questioned did not see a decline in leniency applications in the past five years, and more than 60 percent expect the overall success of the immunity and leniency regime to decrease in coming years.


Johan Ysewyn, who initiated the survey, said he was very surprised by the results, which he described as much more balanced and measured than he expected. He added that competition authorities also need to be aware that the more uncertainty they inject into the immunity process – in terms of the concept of what a cartel is, the applicability of immunity, or whether the applicant will get immunity having complied with the required criteria. He says, “That is where authorities need to find balance to give [company] boards sufficient certainty on the outcome of the process. Consequences for boards need to be definable. A board needs to know what it is getting into – it needs to know what the end game will be.”

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