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Freshfields Risk & Compliance

| less than a minute read

German antitrust reform enters into force – a paradigm shift towards a “competition law with claws and teeth”?

The 11th Amendment to the German Act of Restraints of Competition (ARC) entered into force on 7 November 2023, bringing far-reaching reform to German antitrust law (previously summarized in our blog post here). 

The most notable changes are: 

  • New provisions strengthening the powers of the German Federal Cartel Office (FCO) to carry out sector inquiries and allowing it to impose subsequent remedial measures. These allow the FCO to make far-reaching interventions to combat distortions of competition, even in the absence of any infringement of competition law;
  • Disgorgement of benefits is facilitated through the introduction of two presumptions on the existence and minimum amount of economic advantages, thereby shifting the burden of proof from the FCO to the company; and 
  • Introduction of a legal framework enabling the FCO to enforce the EU Digital Markets Act.

Read our fuller briefing in English or German for a detailed overview of the changes, risks and practical implications for companies. 

If you would like to discuss these developments further, please don't hesitate to get in touch with us or your usual contact in our Antitrust, Competition and Trade team.


antitrust and competition, antitrust, competition