According to the latest case law in 2009, Intel was wrongly sentenced by the European Commission to pay one billion euros. The money was repaid by the EU in early 2022, including €38 million in interest. According to Intel, that was far too little: the group is claiming 593,177,661.75 euros in compensation.
Intel consistently wants 1.25 percent interest + 3.5 percent
Intel was fined €1.06 billion by the EU in May 2009 for abusing a dominant market position. In January 2022, this judgment was delivered by the General Court of the European Union (CFIA) have been canceled. The motivation was: At the time, the European Commission did not sufficiently investigate Intel’s objections.
The €1.06 billion was then returned to Intel in January – including €38 million in interest, which corresponds to an effective interest rate of 0.29 percent for a 12-year term. At the time of the ruling in May 2009, the ECB interest rate was 1.25 percent, but then gradually declined to 0 percent from November 2011 to March 2016 (additionally Intel does not want to accept this bill but is demanding an interest rate of 1.25 percent over the entire term, against which the European Commission should have borrowed the money from the ECB in May 2009, and a further 3.5 percent or, if the judge does not agree or responds to this request, another reasonable surcharge as compensation.
This is the only way for the EU to make good the damage caused by the wrongful payment of €1.06 billion Article 340 TFEU is required to balance. The CJEU will now have to decide whether to apply 1.25 percent over the full 12 years while the ECB grants loans for two weeks and whether to reimburse a total of 4.75 percent for damages that Intel did not explain in detail in the claim.
Next payout to Qualcomm?
Such a judgment would not be without further consequences. Because the Intel case wasn’t the only defeat of the EU’s competition watchers recently. Four and a half years after the European Commission fined Qualcomm €997 million for abusing a dominant position in the LTE baseband chipset sector, Qualcomm also recently won the appeal.
The reason given in this case was: There were too many procedural errors. Here too, a large sum of millions in damages is likely to be owed, provided that the verdict ultimately stands. Because just like with Intel, the last word has probably not yet been spoken for Qualcomm.
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