Direito da concorrência e ordens profissionais
Title: Direito da concorrência e ordens profissionais
Author: SÉRVULO CORREIA, José Manuel; MEDEIROS, Rui; FIDALGO DE FREITAS, Tiago; TAVARES LANCEIRO, Rui
Publisher: Coimbra Editora
Citation: Coimbra, Coimbra Editora, 2010
This book focuses on the relationship between competition law and professional associations. In its Part I, and after providing a picture of the range of existing professional services and the (economic) characterisation of its markets, a thorough and critical analysis of the EU case-law on the (unavoidable) submission of the acts of professional associations to competition law is offered from a perspective of constitutional pragmatism. Several ways out of that path are then presented, with emphasis to the so called “Wouters exception”, which is presented as a proportionality assesment – rather than an ancillary restriction, a rule of reason or a limitation to the four freedoms. All typical subject areas that are potentially problematic for competition law are examined next: entry restrictions and reserved tasks, fixed prices, recommended prices, advertising restrictions, and business structure regulations. Concluding this part, several proposals of institutional reforms of professional associations that would ensure compliance with competition law are put forward. In its Part II, the book addresses the relationship between the Portuguese Competition Law Authority and professional associations within the framework of the dichotomy regulation / competition law. Being (public) professional associations sectoral regulators, it is submitted that both the latter and the Competition Law Authority are, from a legal perspective, bound to a duty of cooperation. This, together with the public nature of those entities, its autonomy and the technical shortcomings of the wording of the provisions that specify the sanctions in the Competition Act, severely limits the extent to which, in the Portuguese legal order, the Competition Authority may coercively apply any penalties to professional associations.