James is a litigator whose practice covers competition, pharmaceuticals, and international trade. He advises leading industry players in a broad range of business sectors, from information technology and chemicals to airlines and paper. Recognized as one of the leading lawyers in his field by The International Who's Who of Competition Lawyers & Economists 2016, James uses his extensive experience and formidable grasp of EU laws and procedures to help clients navigate complex strategic issues.
James has been involved in pleading numerous high-profile cases in the European Courts, including: Servier (patent settlements), 'SAS v Commission' (Air Cargo), 'Rambus' (standard setting), Intel, (discounts), 'Microsoft v Commission' (compulsory licensing; treatment of trade secrets), 'Hanner' (finding the Swedish retail monopoly on pharmaceuticals illegal), 'Forum 187 v Commission' (fiscal state aids), 'Pfizer v Council' (precautionary principle), 'IMS Health' (compulsory licensing), 'Nintendo v Commission' (parallel trade), 'Servier v Commission' (banning of pharmaceuticals), 'Cheil Jedang v Commission' (fining policy) and 'Du Pont v Commission' (anti-dumping, GSP). The competition law journal Global Competition Review named the Air Cargo case, in which James represented SAS, as its Matter of the Year for 2016.
In the competition field, James regularly advises companies under investigation by the Commission, notably in areas such as pharmaceuticals and standard setting, where IP and competition law overlap. He also advises merging parties under the EU Merger Regulation, and has successfully defended several major cartel cases. He also acts for third-party complainants in mergers and classic antitrust cases and has an extensive advisory practice.
James has initiated worked on several major anti-dumping and anti-subsidy actions for European industries, notably in relation to China and India. He also provides advice on export control compliance with the EU dual-use regulation and national military control regulations.
As leader of the firm's EU sanctions team, James advises clients throughout the world on EU sanctions and export control issues and keeps a very close watch on the frequent changes to EU sanctions regimes, especially those on Iran and Ukraine. (e.g., Iran, Syria, Libya, Belarus, Burma/Myanmar and the Ukraine crisis).
Speaker at the Biotech & Pharma Law Patenting Conference about "Recent trends in competition law", Munich, June 23-24, 2016
"So, are governments expanding collusive theories in competition law?", 19 February, 2016: IATA Legal Symposium 2016, Barcelona, (panel speaker)
Pay for Delay: Views from Both Sides of the Pond, June 23, 2015: video conference organized by the American Bar Association
New Frontiers of Antitrust, June 15, 2015: organized by Concurrences, Paris
"The ECJ ruling on Cartes Bancaires: A new interpretation of 'by object' restrictions?", November 11, 2014: organized by Concurrences, Brussels
EU competition law and patent settlements, IBC pharma and competition, 27 November, Brussels
Follow-on Damages Litigation – Class Actions on the Horizon, London November 20, 2014
Digital Health: The Path Forward, November 13, 2014, Palo Alto
"The Effect of Russian Sanctions on International Trade", October 7, 2014, New York
Pharma Law Academy, September 12, 2014: organized by Informa, Cambridge
The Intel Judgment, American Chamber of Commerce, Brussels, 27 June 2014
The cat warns antitrust watchdogs to be careful when looking at excessive pricing, Competition Law Insight, July 2018 (co-author with Assimakis Komninos)
Article published in the Kluwer Competition blog, entitled "Economists Must Respect Due Process Too! EU General Court annuls Commission decision blocking UPS/TNT merger", March 13, 2017
The Perindopril Case: Patent Settlement and Acquisition of Technology, GCLC Annual Conference Series: The Notion of Restriction of Competition – Revisiting the Foundations of Antitrust Enforcement in Europe, January 2017
Promoting the Off-Label Use of Medicines: Where to Draw the Line?, Bio-Science Law Review, Volume 15, Issue 1, February 2016, and European Journal of Risk Regulation, February 2016, (co-author, with Genevra Forwood)
e-Competitions News Issue August 2015: The EU Court of Justice sets out specific requirements with which an SEP holder needs to comply in order to be able to seek an injunction without abusing its dominant position, Huawei / ZTE, (co-author, with Katarzyna Czapracka and Daniel Hoppe-Jänisch)
Time for some help – DG Comp's latest patent settlement monitoring report reveals a number of serious flaws, including a lack of guidance, Competition Law Insight, 17 February 2015, (co-author, with Jérémie Jourdan)
Band 1: International Trade/WTO - Europe-wide, Chambers Global 2019
Best Lawyers in Belgium 2019:
Competition/Antitrust Law, Regulatory Practice, and Trade Law
The Legal 500 Hall of Fame 2017/2018:
Customs, Trade, WTO and Anti-Dumping
Leading Individual: Customs, Trade, WTO and Anti-Dumping - Belgium, The Legal 500 EMEA 2019
Notable Practitioner: Competition/ European Law - Belgium, Chambers Europe 2019
Notable Practitioner: Life Sciences - Belgium, Chambers Europe 2019
Recommended: Competition: EU and Global – Belgium, The Legal 500 EMEA 2019
Recommended: EU Regulatory - Pharma, Medical Devices and Biotech – Belgium, The Legal 500 EMEA 2019
Who's Who Legal: Competition, 2019
Who's Who Legal: Thought Leaders – Competition, 2019
Who's Who Legal: Trade & Customs, 2019
Who's Who Legal: Life Sciences, 2019
Who's Who Legal: Corporate – Foreign Investment Review, 2019
Global Competition Review 2012 and 2008: Twice named as one of the 40 leading competition lawyers under the age of 40