Action brought on 6 April 2007 - BVGD v Commission
Language of the case: English
Applicant: Belgische Vereniging van handelaars in- en uitvoerders geslepen diamant (Antwerpen, Belgium) (represented by: G. Vandersanden, L. Levi and C. Ronzi, lawyers)
Defendant: Commission of the European Communities
Form of order sought
Annul the decision dated 26 January 2007 by which the European Commission rejected the complaint lodged by BVGD for the reason that there are insufficient grounds for acting on it (Case COMP/39.221/B-2-BVGD/De Beers);
order the European Commission to pay all the costs.
Pleas in law and main arguments
The applicant contests the Commission's decision of 26 January 2007 in competition Case COMP/39.221/B-2 - BVGD/De Beers, by which the Commission rejected the applicant's complaint regarding violations of Articles 81 and 82 EC in connection with the Supplier of Choice system applied by the De Beers Group for the distribution of rough diamonds, with the reasoning that there is not sufficient Community interest to act further on the applicant's complaint.
The applicant alleges that De Beers - a producer of rough diamonds who, according to the applicant, was mainly involved upstream with the sale of rough diamonds - is trying through its Supplier of Choice system to extend its control of the market to cover the entire diamond pipeline from mine to consumer, i.e. also the downstream markets.
In support of its application, the applicant firstly claims a violation of its procedural rights as complainant. The applicant alleges i) that the Commission prevented it from exercising its right to have access under Article 8(1) of Regulation No 773/20041
to the documents on which the Commission based its provisional assessment, ii) that the Commission put undue pressure on the applicant by its management of the time-limits in the case, iii) that the Commission created, in its correspondence with the applicant, confusion as to the stage of the procedure, and iv) that the Commission did not associate the applicant closely with the procedure.
Secondly, the applicant submits that the Commission violated the notion of Community interest and committed manifest errors of appraisal, erred in law and violated its duty to state reasons.____________1 - Commission Regulation (EC) No 773/2004 of 7 April 2004 relating to the conduct of proceedings by the Commission pursuant to Articles 81 and 82 of the EC Treaty (OJ 2004 L 123, p. 18).