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Theories of harm on abuse of dominance

A Sino-EU comparative analysis of the impact of institutional dynamics on the law enforcement
PhD ceremony:Mr X. (Xingyu) Yan
When:May 23, 2019
Supervisors:prof. mr. dr. H.H.B. (Hans) Vedder, prof. dr. S.E. (Stefan) Weishaar, LLM
Where:Academy building RUG
Theories of harm on abuse of dominance

This research is set out to discuss how, in a competition law regime, the institutional dynamics between courts and the enforcement agencies could have an impact on the law enforcement outcomes (presented in Chapter 1). It adopts a comparative law perspective for this discussion, using the regimes of the EU and China as study samples. A theoretical framework, including the conception of “theory of harm”, is established (in Chapter 2) to underpin the comparative analyses.

There are two aspects of comparison. The first one is the comparison between the institutional setting of the EU regime and that of the Chinese regime. There, a key difference is highlighted: pertaining to the court-agency relationship, the EU regime adopts a supervisory model, and the Chinese regime adopts a competitive one (Chapters 3 and 4). Based on that is the second aspect of comparison: the production of theories of harm in these two regimes. In that regard, this research selects and analyzes a number of enforcement cases by the courts and agencies of these two regimes in the arena of abuse of dominance; the analytical focus is on the theories of harm constructed by the relevant enforcers in these cases (Chapters 5 and 6).

This research finds that a competitive model of institutional dynamics incurs more problems than a supervisory one. The implication is that the presence of judicial supervision, or the lack thereof, has a definitive impact on the quality of the theories of harm produced (Chapter 7).