However, in general, the likelihood of joint procurement agreements raising competition concerns is less if the parties do not have market power in the sales market or in the markets. As long as participation in the definition of standard conditions for competitors in the market in question (either by participation in the trade association or directly) is full and the standard conditions set are not binding and accessible to all, these agreements should not have any restrictive effects on competition (subject to the reservations exposed to points 303). 304, 305 and 307). On the other hand, horizontal cooperation agreements can create competition problems. That is the case, for example. B where the parties agree to set prices or production or share markets, or where cooperation allows the parties to retain, gain or increase market power, which can have negative market effects in terms of price, production, product quality, product diversity or innovation. The nature and content of an agreement refers to factors such as the area and purpose of cooperation, the competitive relationship between the parties and the extent to which they combine their activities. These factors determine any competition problems that may arise from a horizontal cooperation agreement. Cooperation in research and development can limit competition in a number of ways. First, it can reduce or slow down innovation, which can lead to less or less good products coming to market later than they normally would. Second, cooperation in the area of research and development D in product or technology markets can significantly reduce competition between parties outside the scope of the agreement or allow anti-competitive coordination in those markets, which can lead to higher prices. A silos problem can only arise in the context of cooperation involving at least one player with a significant degree of market power (which is not necessarily a dominant position) for a key technology and the exclusive exploitation of results.
Competition between parties to a production agreement can be directly restricted in several ways. For example, parties to a joint production venture could limit the production of the joint venture compared to what the parties would have put on the market if each of them had decided on its own production.