1 Regulation (EU) No 330/2010 of the Commission of 20 April 2010 relating to the application of Article 101, paragraph 3, from the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union to the categories of Vertical Agreements and Concerted Practices, JO L 347 of 21.11.2010, p. JO L 102, 23.4.2010, p. 1 to 7. Data sharing is a good example. Data has become an increasingly important contribution to the market and many companies need quick access to this data. However, the vertical guidelines do not provide guidelines for the flow of information between different levels of the distribution chain. For example, commodity producers typically need to record their distributors` sales forecasts in order to optimize their production planning. These manufacturers may also be required to inform their distributors on a regular basis in advance of the planned maintenance of the facilities in order to enable distributors and their customers to find, if necessary, alternative sources of supply in the gas sector. However, the same manufacturers sometimes sell their products directly to customers, in competition with their distributors (“double distribution”).

The exchange of information is also important for the collection of information from downstream parties, including retailers.B. The need for guidance therefore seems clear. It will be important for the Commission, in the development of these new sections, to ensure that its position is consistent with all the changes it intends to make to its guidelines on horizontal cooperation agreements and related category exemptions for which it is conducting a similar assessment. The evaluation also indicates that, since the adoption of the VBER, judicial and enforcement practices relating to certain vertical agreements and related restrictions have developed considerably. We can expect the VB and vertical directives to be updated to reflect EU jurisprudence on this issue. For example, in the context of selective distribution agreements, a number of important judgments have been issued, including: the VBER defines the categories of vertical agreements that are not subject to the prohibition of anti-competitive agreements (Article 101 of the TFUE) on the grounds that their pro-competitive effects (in accordance with Article 101, paragraph 3, of the EUF) are compensated. The aim is to ensure legal certainty for stakeholders on vertical agreements that can be considered to be in line with Article 101 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union, on the basis of a simpler set of rules, and on agreements that require an expanded individual assessment. It should also serve as a common assessment framework for national competition authorities and national courts to ensure consistency in the application of relevant rules and hence equal conditions of competition between companies across the EU. Conclusion The Commission`s assessment of the VBER and the vertical guidelines strongly shows that the Commission will not allow the current regime to fall, as it has largely found that it has made a significant contribution to the legal and security of business in the area of distribution law and other vertical agreements. However, the Commission`s assessment shows that the current VB and vertical guidelines do not adequately address important digital developments such as the rapid growth of online sales and the growing importance of online market platforms as a mode of distribution. The Commission`s impact analysis questionnaire and the public consultation questionnaire (probably by the end of 2020) will provide an increasingly clear indication of the direction of the Commission`s trip, but it is expected that the above key issues will remain essential to ensure that the regime remains appropriate.

On 24 May 2000, the European Commission adopted, in a final form, its guidelines on vertical restrictions (the “guidelines”). The new category exemption regulation for vertical agreements (Regulation 2790/1999, below “class exemption regulation” or “new regulation”) was adopted in December 1999 and comes into force on June 1, 2000.