Any horizontal or green green agreement, for which no class exemption is granted, must be reviewed by the parties themselves to determine whether the agreement is anti-competitive. To support this approach, the European Commission has published guidelines (see guidelines on vertical restrictions) on the main factors to be considered. A horizontal restriction of competition refers to an agreement or procedure to restrict competition between companies operating at the same level of production or distribution, i.e. real or potential competitors. These guidelines apply only to the most common forms of cooperation: research and development agreements (R and development D), production agreements, sales contracts, marketing agreements, standardization agreements and information exchanges. Agreements between companies at another level of the production or distribution chain (vertical agreements) are, in principle, covered by the vertical restriction exemption regulation and vertical restriction guidelines. However, to the extent that vertical agreements are concluded between competitors, they must be evaluated in accord with the principles applicable to horizontal agreements. When horizontal agreements result in a concentration, the merger regulation applies. In the case of agreements between competitors, the GMO only applies if, at the time of the contract, the parties` cumulative market share is less than or equal to 25%. Vertical agreements are agreements between two or more parties that, within the meaning of this agreement, operate at different levels of the production, supply and distribution chain. For example, between a manufacturer and a supplier or between a supplier and a distributor. As a result, horizontal agreements differ from vertical agreements between companies operating at different levels of trade or .B industry, for example between large and retail companies.

The term „naked“ is due to the fact that the agreement serves only the personal interest of the company concerned. A bare reluctance is distinguished from the other restrictions by their lack of solid justification. In general, a restriction of competition can be justified as an accessory to a broader legitimate objective. This may be the case where an agreement has an overall pro-competition effect, while part of the agreement, without which it would not be viable, limits competition. You can`t say that about a naked cartel. The following conditions must be met in order for the R D may benefit from RDBER`s safe harbor: it is important to remember that the category exemption for vertical agreements does not apply to Chapter II or Section 102 prohibitions. Therefore, any dominant entity in the market should consider the potential for the removal of these provisions. However, where a practice is covered by the category exemption for vertical agreements, the parties must have met the review of market share thresholds and are therefore less likely to be considered „dominant“ within the meaning of Chapter II or Section 102.