Retained Vertical Agreements Block Exemption Regulation
Download the full outcome
Detail of outcome
Consultation on updated guidance
31 March 2022: Following acceptance by the Secretary of State of the CMA’s recommendation to replace the retained VABER on its expiry with a new block exemption, the CMA is consulting on draft guidance on the block exemption.
Recommendation to the Secretary of State
3 November 2021: The CMA has published its recommendation to the Secretary of State.
Detail of feedback received
3 November 2021: We have received the above responses to our consultation
17 June 2021: The CMA published, for consultation, its proposed recommendation to the Secretary of State for consultation. The CMA will consider responses to the consultation before making a final recommendation to the Secretary of State in autumn 2021.
Timetable of work
|31 May 2022||Retained Vertical Agreements Block Exemption Regulation expires, is varied or is replaced.|
|Early 2022||Consultation on any UK guidance on vertical agreements|
|November 2021||Publication of CMA’s final recommendation to Secretary of State|
|17 June 2021 - 22 July 2021||Consultation on CMA’s proposed recommendation to Secretary of State|
|Spring 2021||Stakeholder roundtables|
Following the UK’s exit from the European Union, the EU ‘block exemption regulations’ which were in force at the end of the Transition Period (ie on 31 December 2020) under EU law were retained in UK law when the Transition Period came to an end. For details, see guidance on the functions of the CMA after the end of the Transition Period (paragraphs 4.31 to 4.36).
Agreements between businesses that meet the conditions of any of the retained block exemption regulations are presumed to be lawful under UK competition law. In this way, the retained block exemption regulations provide legal certainty for businesses.
The CMA has a role in advising the Secretary at the Department of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) on varying or revoking retained block exemption regulations, or replacing them with UK legislation when they expire.
The CMA reviewed the retained Vertical Agreements Block Exemption Regulation (retained VABER) for the purpose of making a recommendation to the Secretary of State in accordance with the Competition Act 1998 about whether to replace the retained VABER when it expires on 31 May 2022.
The CMA will be reviewing the other retained Block Exemption Regulations in due course in order to make a recommendation to the Secretary of State.
Any personal data provided to the CMA will be handled in accordance with the CMA’s obligations under the Data Protection Act 2018, the UK GDPR and other law designed to protect sensitive information.
For more information about how the CMA handles personal information, see the CMA’s Personal Information Charter.
Last updated 3 November 2021 + show all updates
Responses to the consultation and CMA’s final recommendation published.