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This book discusses the role of public policy in Article 81 of the EC Treaty. The Commission, and recently the Court of First Instance have said that the sole objective of Article 81 EC is consumer welfare. Many competition lawyers and economists support this view. Writing in a crisp, plain style, Townley demonstrates that public policy considerations are still relevant in that provision. He also examines how and where they are currently considered and then suggests why, how and where this might be changed.
The book explains how some of the most complex competition law cases can be understood and offers a framework for those fighting or deciding such cases in the future. As such, it will be of interest to European competition lawyers, both academics and practitioners (furnishing them with a framework for hard cases), as well as students, seeking a deeper understanding of how the European competition rules work and how they interact both with European Union and Member State public policy goals.
It will also help competition economists by revealing the mechanisms through which public policy considerations impact upon the consumer welfare test in European law.