Restrictive Trade Practices

  • Unless approved in advance or exempted, restrictive arrangements or practices are prohibited under Israeli law. They are unenforceable, can be the basis for civil claims, including class actions, and expose the parties to such arrangements to administrative fines. Furthermore, it is a criminal offence to be a party to an unlawful restrictive arrangement.

     

    S. Horowitz & Co. has the necessary expertise to review and, if required, adapt commercial agreements in order to limit any such risks in a manner that best meets the commercial objectives of the client. We have substantial experience advising international and local companies, across a wide range of industries, on the impact of Israeli competition law on all types of commercial agreements, whether horizontal or vertical and whether between competitors or non-competitors.

     

    Our expertise also includes:

     

    • Structuring commercial agreements to fall within the block exemptions or rulings issued by the Israeli competition authorities
    • Advising on, and preparing, notices for individual exemptions from the Israeli competition and antitrust authorities
    • Developing and implementing competition law compliance programs
    • Representing IATA (the International Air Transport Association) in proceedings before the Controller of Israeli Restrictive Trade Practices to extend IATA's individual exemption for the operation of its centralised settling program for airlines and travel agents (BSP), as well as the application for an exemption to set up a similar settling program for cargo (CASS)
    • Also representing IATA in the appeal to the Restrictive Trade Practices Court commenced by the Israel Travel Agents Association which sought to challenge the decision of the Controller to grant thee BSP exemption
    • Representing Bank Leumi on an investigation into cartel/collusive behaviour between the five largest banks in Israel arising from exchange of information regarding fees.  Each of the Banks disputed the findings made by the Israeli antitrust authorities and sought judicial review (in respect of which we acted for Bank Leumi) by way of filing an appeal to the Tribunal
    • Representing Paz (Israel's largest oil and gas company) in a class action brought by the owners of Paz licensed petrol stations (the largest network of petrol stations in Israel) in one of the largest ever class actions, relating to alleged restrictive arrangements between Paz and its various petrol station franchisees across Israel
    • Representing Sharp Corporation in the defence of a class action that was instituted against Sharp, Samsung Electronics Co., AU Optronic, Chi Mei and LG Display, claiming that the parties had infringed antitrust law by conspiring to fix prices for LCD panels
    • Representing Israel Electric Corporation (IEC) on successfully obtaining an individual exemption from the Israeli Antitrust Authorities for the long term Gas Sale and Purchase Agreement made between IEC, Noble Energy Mediterranean, Ltd., Isramco Negev 2 LP, Delek Drilling L.P., Avner Oil Exploration L.P. and Dor Gas Explorations Limited Partnership. This is currently Israel’s largest long term gas supply contract, worth $8 billion
    • Representing Kimberley Clark Corporation on the obtaining of an individual exemption from the Israeli antitrust authorities in respect of certain non-competition covenants given in its and its wholly owned subsidiary, Hogla-Kimberley, favour by Hadera Paper Ltd.
    • Representing British Airways in connection with a class action instituted against British Airways, El Al, Lufthansa and Swiss for alleged price-fixing relating to cargo surcharges, seeking to deny class action certification for the proceedings in Israel
    • Representing Reshet-Noga Ltd., one of the two concessionaires running the Israeli commercial television channel (including Channel 2 which is one of the most successful television networks in Israel), in proceedings before the Restrictive Trade Practices Tribunal objecting to the formation of a royalty collection society for directors and scriptwriters on the basis that the proposed rules constituted restrictive arrangements