Interim Measures Urgency

Interim Measures Urgency

Interim Measures: Urgency

Regulation 1/2003 provides that interim measures should only be granted in cases of urgency due to the risk of serious and irreparable harm to competition.

More about Interim Measures Urgency

In order to qualify as “urgent”, the case must call for immediate action on the part of the Commission, in order to avoid either a “serious and irreparable damage” to the party seeking the adoption of interim measures, or to avoid a situation that is intolerable for the public interest.

More about the Subject

In order to establish whether “serious” damage may be caused, a case-by-case analysis has to be carried out, bearing in mind the particular circumstances of the individual case.

Other Considerations

The ECJ has stated that damage is deemed to be “irreparable” if it can no longer be remedied by a subsequent decision during the administrative procedure before the Commission. Therefore, “irreparable” damage may be deemed to exist even in a scenario where the damage in question may be repaired by a judgment before either a national or European Court 1 . Financial loss is not regarded as irreparable unless the survival of the undertaking concerned is threatened. But damage will be regarded as irreparable if it leads to market developments that will be very difficult to reverse 2 .


In Port of Roscoff 3 , following a complaint of the Irish Continental Group (“ICG”) seeking access to the port of Roscoff (Brittany) for the purpose of commencing a ferry service between Ireland and Brittany in the summer of 1995, the Commission ordered interim measures, obliging CCI Morlaix to take the necessary steps to grant such access until the end of the summer season. The Commission took into consideration the special circumstances involving the holiday period for the provision of these ferry services.


Likewise, in Mars/Langnese-Iglo and Schoeller Lebensmittel 4 , the Commission imposed interim measures following a complaint by Mars, based on the allegation that its access to the German market for single-item ice-cream was illegally barred. The urgency 5 of this case was mainly related to the seasonal nature of the product concerned (ice cream).


See Also


  • Information about Interim Measures Urgency in the Antitrust Manual of Procedures for the application of Articles 101 and 102 TFEU (Internal DG Competition)


[Note 1]
Ibid, paragraph 80.
[Note 2]
Case T-184/01 R IMS Health [2001] ECR II-3193, paragraphs 121, 128 and 129.
[Note 3]
Irish Continental Group v. CCI Morlaix, IP 1995/05/16.
[Note 4]
Mars / Langnese-Iglo and Schoeller Lebensmittel, Case IV/34.072, OJ 1993 L 183/19.
[Note 5]
In IMS, the President of the General Court considered that “if a risk of serious and irreparable harm exists urgency is inevitably simultaneously established” (paragraph 54).

Further Reading

  • Information about Interim Measures Urgency in “An Introduction to EU Competition Law”, Moritz Lorenz (Cambridge University Press)

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