The European Commission, together with the national competition authorities, directly enforces EU competition rules, Articles 101-109 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the EU (TFEU), to make EU markets work better, by ensuring that all companies compete equally and fairly on their merits. This benefits consumers, businesses and the European economy as a whole.
Within the Commission, the Directorate-General (DG) for Competition is primarily responsible for these direct enforcement powers.
Competition policy in Europe is a vital part of the internal market. Its aim is to provide everyone in Europe with better quality goods and services at lower prices. Competition policy is about applying rules to make sure companies compete fairly with each other. This encourages enterprise and efficiency, creates a wider choice for consumers and helps reduce prices and improve quality. These are the reasons why the EU fights anticompetitive behaviour, reviews mergers and state aid and encourages liberalisation.
The Commission mobilise competition policy tools and market expertise so that they contribute to the Union's jobs, growth and investment agenda, including in areas such as the digital single market, energy union, financial services, industrial policy and the fight against tax evasion.
The Commission pursues an effective enforcement of competition rules in the areas of antitrust and cartels, mergers and state aid, maintaining competition instruments aligned with market developments, as well as promoting a competition culture in the EU and world-wide. The Commission follows an economic as well as a legal approach to the assessment of competition issues.
The Commission has also put forward measures to improve the right for consumers and businesses to get damage compensation when they are victims of anti-competitive conduct, and has strengthened and streamlined state aid investigation procedures.