HomeInsightsCompetition Act 1998 (Vertical Agreements Block Exemption) Order 2022 laid before Parliament

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The new Block Exemption Order gives effect to the Competition and Markets Authority’s recommendation from November 2021 that the Secretary of State should make an order that specifies certain categories of vertical agreements to exempt them from the prohibition in Chapter I of the 1998 Act, which prohibits agreements between firms that prevent, restrict or distort competition.

The purpose of the Order is to ensure that businesses are not prevented or disincentivised from entering into agreements that the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) considers to be overall beneficial and not anticompetitive.

The Order replaces the retained Vertical Agreements Block Exemption Regulation (2010/330/EU) (the retained VABER) which was made under EU law and retained in UK law after the UK’s withdrawal from the EU. The retained VABER expires on 31 May 2022. The new Order will come into effect on 1 June 2022. To access the new legislation, click here.