Document Type

Contribution to Book

Publication Date

January 2008


Underlying the recurring debates over the future of Article 82 EC are competing images of what its goals are and should be. Such debates about the interpretation and application of Article 82 are not new, and they are also not likely to end, because the legal concept of “abuse” is sufficiently abstract and capacious to allow multiple conceptions of its goals. Where goals become contested and controversial, however, debates can lead to confusion and uncertainty rather than progress in thinking about the issues, and this threatens to occur in the context of discussions of Article 82 and its future. Clashing images of the goals of that provision have yielded much uncertainty about the future of the law in this area. They have also distorted images of both the existing law and of newer alternatives to it. This impedes the capacity of European judges and administrators to apply the law consistently and effectively. It should be valuable, therefore, to identify and assess the lines and contours of these debates and the images of law, economics and European integration that swirl within them.