The European Commission (EC) proposed new procedures for settling cartel investigations on Oct. 27. These included a draft amendment to the existing procedural regulation and a draft notice outlining the settlement procedure.

The aim of the proposals — as confirmed by Commissioner Neelie Kroes in a speech on Nov. 19, 2007, in Barcelona — is to introduce a procedure whereby companies under investigation can elect to admit liability and waive certain rights to defend their case in return for a reduction of their eventual fine for their involvement in a cartel.