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Competition law is a subject of central importance. Reports in the press concerning the subject appear almost daily. An accessible introduction to this legal field is thus indispensable for students and practitioners alike. This book is intended to serve as a first acquaintance with competition law. It is written in particular for students who intend to study a foundation course in competition law.
The current competition law in the UK consists of two main levels: EC competition law and UK competition law. In this introduction both levels are covered, along with an abbreviated introduction to the EC rules on state aids. An important function of this book is to provide an insight into the combined system of UK and EC competition law. This means that, in spite of the introductory character of the book, a large number of topics needs to be discussed. Without coverage of the basic principles of competition law, the system and its workings are impossible both to understand and explain.
Therefore, for the three main subjects (the prohibition of cartels, the prohibition of the abuse of a position of dominance and the supervision of 'concentrations' (mergers and acquisitions)) extensive examples, drawn from European and UK practice, have been provided. These examples are then used in the explanation of the general principles, taking into account the changes as a result of the recent introduction of Regulation 1/2003. With this approach, the book aims to reach a broad range of readers: students, teachers in further and higher education, officials and practising lawyers who are not usually faced with competition law issues in their everyday working lives.
Extra information has also been included in the footnotes, indicating references to the more specialised literature where this seemed appropriate. In this way, the authors hope to provide a clear, up-to-date introduction to this complex and fascinating area of the law, while also giving scope to the reader to develop and extend his or her knowledge of the subject still further.