Allocation of cases

The rules of the Community's procedural regulation ( Council Regulation (EC) No 1/2003 ) and the Commission Notice on cooperation within the Network of Competition Authorities make possible the transmission of cases between members of the European Competition Network ( ECN ). The ECN consists of the Commission and the Member States' competition authorities. In the framework of close cooperation within the ECN, members immediately inform each other when they start a case on Community law basis. As a consequence of the mutual information sharing, the ECN cooperation makes it possible for an NCA (national Competition Authority) to initiate a proceeding in a case in which another ECN member has already initiated its proceeding (this is not possible when the Commission initiated the proceeding). There is also a possibility for the authority which originally initiated the proceeding to suspend or terminate its proceeding when it notices that another NCA has initiated its own proceeding. It is very important that the competition authority, which finally handles the case, should be concerned by it in some way (e.g. with the conduct affecting competition in its territory or starting from its territory), furthermore, it should be able effectively to terminate the unlawful conduct (possibly with the active assistance of another NCA).