"SELECTIVE DISTRIBUTION SYSTEMS AND THE EUROPEAN COMPETITION LAW "
The function of the Article 85 of the EC Treaty is to promote the freed of manufacturers to determine most appropriate form of distribution for their products. Along the years, the Commission has issued several block exemption regulations on the matter which, combined with the progressive waiver of individual exemptions, leads to a high regulatory density and to a competitively doubtful uniformization of distribution in certain sectors (i. a., motor vehicle distribution), as long as competition among different forms of distribution shall be excluded.
The purpose of this project is to systematize, with rigour and method, all the criteria which operate upon the antitrust judgement of a distribution system. This aim has a notable interest for theorical as much as for practical reasons.
Over the first ones, because the especialized literature has only studi the different systems in singular, but has completely ignored the interrelationships and, above all, the discordances between them.
Over the second ones, for when choosing the distribution strategy that best fits their specifical necessities, manufacturers are in need of definite codes to be certain whether their conduct will have (or not) a negative impact on competition, depending on the system of
distribution;elected (franchising, exclusive distribution, selective distribution in general, agency systems...). Moreover, special attention shall be paid to the specific problems which competition faces according to different sectors (to cite here, as example, the questions arised by the brand new Regulation nr. 1475/9S. concerning the block exemption for motor vehicle distribution systems).