Dr Albertina Albors-Llorens
University of Cambridge, Faculty of Law

This paper will address two specific aspects of Directive 2014/104/EU, which now governs actions for damages for breach of the EU competition rules. First, it will examine the implications of the complex harmonisation framework provided by this Directive. In particular, the Directive offers a combination of uniform principles, minimum harmonisation rules and a very broad residual application of national procedural norms in a way that is new to the legislative fabric of EU Competition law and which deserves consideration. Second, it will consider whether the directive has really achieved the effective co-ordination of the systems of private and public enforcement of Articles 101 and 102 TFEU that it had sought to attain.  It will argue that, while the Directive represents the first legislative attempt to harmonise a sensitive area and hence to remove some of the obstacles that have traditionally stood in the way of the creation of a robust and effective system of private enforcement of EU competition law, significant difficulties still remain. It will show that balancing this objective with the need to preserve the effectiveness of the well-developed system of public enforcement of the EU rules and with deference to the national systems of Private Law, -thus respecting the division of competences between the EU and the Member States-  are formidable, yet not unrealistic, aspirations.