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Market forces and government regulation go hand in hand. Market forces will only work if there is competition. Anti-competitive agreements between companies, for instance on prices or market areas, the exchange of competition-sensitive information and the abuse of dominant economic power may disrupt the market forces (to an excessive degree). Anti-Trust laws set limits in this area and the regulatory bodies, including the European Commission and the ACM (Netherlands Authority for Consumers and Markets), see to it that these limits are respected.
The functioning of the market is not only protected via Anti-Trust laws. There are also procurement rules, for instance, which must guarantee that public tenders are open to competition in a fair and transparent manner. For the procurement procedure in the healthcare & life sciences sectors, specific rules or directives sometimes apply. Examples are the Regulations for Transparent Health Procurement Procedures issued by NZa (Dutch Healthcare Authority) and the Joint Medicine Procurement Guidance issued by the ACM. Practice shows that businesses faced with procurement procedures regularly encounter unclear or unlawful requirements in procurement documents or are – wrongly – not designated as the winning tenderer. Companies can also run up against the limits of competition law in procurement procedures; not every form of collaboration (in the area of procurement) is allowed according to the ACM.
Leijnse Artz assists national and international companies that are affected by Anti-Trust laws and procurement law, especially in the regulated healthcare & life sciences sectors. The lawyers of Leijnse Artz provide advice on the various aspects of Anti-Trust laws and assist companies with the implementation of compliance programmes or with obtaining approval for mergers. The specialists of Leijnse Artz also help companies that wish to participate in procurement procedures, including by assessing the tender or procurement documents, asking questions in connection with the memorandum of information or taking legal action (in preliminary relief proceedings or otherwise). Leijnse Artz have extensive experience with proceedings before all these regulatory authorities and with legal assistance in investigations or enforcement proceedings.