In a competitive market suppliers are subject to the competitive pressure exerted by other competitors and behave independently, complying with the rules, according to their commercial strategies and the merits of their products/services.
When market players’ conduct restricts or distorts competition in the market such behaviour will likely be deemed an anti-competitive practice.
Anti-competitive practices include agreements, concerted practices and decisions of associations of undertakings (anti-competitive coordination provided for Article 9 of Law No. 19/2012 of 8 of May and Article 101 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union); the abuse of a dominant position (provided for Article 11 of Law No. 19/2012 of 8 of May and Article 102 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union) and the abuse of economic dependence (provided for Article 12 of Law No. 19/2012 of 8 of May). Such conduct is unlawful where it has the object or effect of restricting competition.
In Portugal, the Competition Authority is responsible for the detection and investigation of such practices, and may apply sanctions, where appropriate, including fines of up to 10% of turnover. It is the Competition Authority’s mission to ensure the enforcement of competition rules in Portugal, in order to guarantee the principles of an open market economy and free competition, in turn ensuring the efficient functioning of markets, a high level of technical progress and the pursuit of consumers’ interests.