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Information on infringements and complaints
This notice sets out both the arrangements available for the informal submission of market information to the Commission and the procedures applicable to formal complaints. The aim is to encourage citizens and undertakings to provide information about suspected infringements of the competition rules
Commission Notice 2004/C 101/05 on the handling of complaints by the Commission under Articles 81 and 82 of the EC Treaty (Text with EEA relevance) [Official Journal C 101, 27.4.2004].
Without prejudice to Regulation EC No 1/2003 and Regulation EC No 773/2004, the Notice intends to provide guidance to citizens and undertakings that are seeking relief from suspected infringements of the competition rules. In addition to recalling the principles related to work-sharing between the Commission and the national competition authorities in the enforcement system established by Regulation 1/2003 that are explained in the Notice on cooperation within the network of competition authorities, the Notice also explains the procedure for the treatment of complaints pursuant to Article 7(2) of Regulation EC No 1/2003 by the Commission.
Under this Article, natural or legal persons who can show a legitimate interest are entitled to lodge a complaint to ask the Commission to find an infringement of Articles 81 and 82 of the EC Treaty. The complaint (see complaints form C, in annex of the Regulation EC No 773/2004) should be submitted in three paper copies as well as, if possible, an electronic copy. In addition, the complainant must provide a non-confidential version of the complaint. The information which could be the starting point for an investigation by the Commission, can be sent by electronic mail to COMP-MARKET-INFORMATION@ec.europa.eu or by post to the following address: European Commission DG Competition B - 1049 Brussels, Belgium.
Correspondence to the Commission that does not comply with the requirements laid down will be considered by the Commission as general information that, where it is useful, can lead to an own-initiative investigation. Persons who wish to inform the Commission of suspected infringements of Articles 81 and 82 of the EC Treaty without revealing their identity to the undertakings concerned may do so; the Commission is bound to respect an informant's request for anonymity. This special arrangement enables undertakings or citizens to provide market information to the Commission informally and to prompt the Commission to take action.
If a case does not display sufficient Community interest to justify (further) investigation, the Commission can reject the complaint.
This summary is for information only. It is not designed to interpret or replace the reference document, which remains the only binding legal text.