by Philip Bentley, Wilko van Weert and Philipp Werner

Up until September 18, 2006, maritime transport services were exempt from the EU competition rules in respect of liner conferences.  In addition, cabotage and international tramp vessel services were exempt from the enforcement powers in competition matters.  These exemptions were abolished on September 18, 2006, subject to a two year transitional period.  Maritime transport services then became subject to sector-specific guidelines that are applicable until September 26, 2013, when they will be superseded by the general, non-sector-specific guidelines.

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