Spanish Antitrust Watchdog Can't Refer Questions To ECJ

Law360, London (September 16, 2020, 6:18 PM BST) -- The European Union's highest court refused Wednesday to answer whether Spanish dockworkers' latest collective bargaining agreement reforming the union-dominated sector violates antitrust rules, saying Spain's competition watchdog isn't similar enough to a court to submit queries.

Spain's National Commission on Markets and Competition's legal referrals to the European Court of Justice are "inadmissible" because the watchdog doesn't qualify as a court or tribunal under EU law, judges said.

Instead, actions by the competition authority, or CNMC, "resemble administrative decisions, which precludes them from being adopted in the exercise of judicial functions," judges for the ECJ wrote.

"Penalty proceedings before the CNMC...

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