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Multi-Jurisdictional Leniency Applications and the Deterring Effect on Leniency journal article

Ruben Korsten

European Competition and Regulatory Law Review, Volume 6 (2022), Issue 3, Page 195 - 206

Since pioneering work of Choi Gerlach in 2012, not much game theoretical literature has followed to address issues of global cartel formation and international antitrust enforcement. This article addresses this gap, especially with regards to multi-jurisdictional leniency applications. It is found that multi-jurisdictional leniency applications expose international cartel leniency applicants to various risks and have high transaction costs. Therefore, the effectiveness of domestic programmes depends on the possibility of obtaining leniency in other jurisdictions. If an applicant can simultaneously count with leniency in all relevant jurisdictions, the attractiveness of leniency should increase, as the overall benefits for the applicant will be greater. However, if applying for leniency leads to leniency in some jurisdictions but certain penalties in others, this will disincentivise the use of leniency, which would make international cartels more stable. This article thus demonstrates the need for international cooperation in order for leniency policies to be effective. Keywords: antitrust enforcement; cartels; information sharing; international cooperation; leniency