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Refusal to License- Intellectual Property Rights as Abuse of Dominance

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Claudia Schmidt

Refusal to license intellectual property rights (IPRs) are an ongoing topic within the enforcement of Article 102 TFEU (ex Article 82 EC). Nevertheless, so far an economic founded instrument to analyse these cases is missing. To close this gap, the Innovation Effects and Appropriability Test will be developed throughout this book. Innovation research has been showing that firms rely on more appropriation mechanisms than only IPRs. The availability of these alternative instruments depends on the involved technologies, the kind of innovation, the concerned industry and so on. Consequently, it is in the centre of the Innovation Effects and Appropriability Test to analyse whether the dominant firm could rely on other appropriation instruments to protect its innovation and to recoup its investments in R&D.

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Table of Abbreviations..................................................................................... XIII 1 Introduction ...................................................................................................... 1 2 The Situation to Date ....................................................................................... 5 2.1 Abuse of Dominance and Article 102 TFEU.............................................. 6 2.1.1 Brief Introduction to Article 102 TFEU........................................... 6 2.1.2 Reform of Article 102 TFEU............................................................ 8 2.1.2.1 The More Economic Approach ........................................... 8 2.1.2.2 Framework for Assessing Abusive Conduct ....................... 9 2.2 An Overview of Article 102 TFEU Intellectual Property Cases .............. 11 2.3 Comparison with American Caselaw ........................................................ 20 2.3.1 An Overview of Abuse of Intellectual Property Rights Cases....... 20 2.3.2 Are There Systematic Differences Between U.S. and EU Decisions?....................................................................................... 24 2.4 The European Microsoft Case: Introduction of the Incentives Balance Test? .......................................................................................................... 27 2.4.1 The Decision of the Commission ................................................... 28 2.4.2 The Judgment of the CFI ................................................................ 32 2.4.3 Discussion of the Microsoft Decision ............................................ 35 2.4.3.1 The Requirement of Indispensability ................................ 35 2.4.3.2 Elimination of Competition ............................................... 36 2.4.3.3 The New Product Requirement ......................................... 37 2.4.3.4 Objective Justification and the Incentive Balance Test..... 38 2.5 Criteria for Refusal to License in the Article 102 TFEU Guidance Paper.......................................................................................................... 42 Contents VIII 2.6 The Incentives Balance Test as a New Instrument in Competition Policy?....................................................................................................... 45 3 Do Competition Policy and Intellectual Property Rights Stand in Conflict With Each Other?............................................................................ 47 3.1 Interface between Competition Law and Intellectual Property Law........ 47 3.1.1 Conflict Theory............................................................................... 48 3.1.2 Theory of Complementarity ........................................................... 51 3.2 Innovation as a Common Objective.......................................................... 53 3.2.1 Justification of Intellectual Property Rights ................................... 53 3.2.2 Economic Goals of Competition Policy......................................... 56 3.2.3 Interface of Competition Policy and Intellectual Property Law from an Economic Perspective ....................................................... 59 3.2.4 Tension between European...

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