By Georgiana Badescu, Mona Banu, Volker Weiss
This is how it all starts: with a ring at the door
We can only imagine how big the surprise must be when you find out that your Belgium-based office is being raided in an investigation by the Romanian Competition Authority. But it is a fact that the Romanian Competition Council (the “RCC”) got a taste of cross-border raids.
In the past, several foreign-based companies had been subject to investigations (and some of them ultimately fined), but the investigation methods used to be milder. The foreign-based company merely received requests for information, while national companies were thoroughly inspected. Starting in early 2017, the RCC literally went beyond the frontier: with the support of national competition authorities and local police, they raided companies from Italy, the UK and Belgium in two of their currently ongoing investigations on the insurance and pharmaceuticals markets.