Final report of the Hearing Officer in Case COMP/38.628 — Chloroprene Rubber (pursuant to Articles 15 and 16 of Commission Decision 2001/462/EC, ECSC of 23 May 2001 on the terms of reference of Hearing Officers in certain competition proceedings — OJ L 162, 19.6.2001, p. 21 )
OJ C 86, 15.4.2009, p. 5–6 (BG, ES, CS, DA, DE, ET, EL, EN, FR, IT, LV, LT, HU, MT, NL, PL, PT, RO, SK, SL, FI, SV)
BG CS DA DE EL EN ES ET FI FR HU IT LT LV MT NL PL PT RO SK SL SV
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Final report of the Hearing Officer in Case COMP/38.628 — Chloroprene Rubber
(pursuant to Articles 15 and 16 of Commission Decision 2001/462/EC, ECSC of 23 May 2001 on the terms of reference of Hearing Officers in certain competition proceedings — OJ L 162, 19.6.2001, p. 21)
The draft Decision gives rise to the following observations:
The draft Decision in the above mentioned case gives rise to the following observations.
The investigation in this case was triggered by an application for immunity on 13 December 2002 under the Commission notice on immunity from fines and reduction of fines in cartel cases (the Leniency Notice)  concerning the existence of a cartel in the NBR market in Europe.
Subsequently, the undertakings Bayer AG and Zeon Corporation applied for leniency on 30 January and 27 August 2003, respectively. On 29 March 2007, Bayer and Zeon were informed of the Commissions intention to grant them a reduction of fine within a band of 30-50 % and 20-30 %, respectively, of the fine which would otherwise be imposed on them
An inspection was carried out at the premises of Zeon Chemical Europe on 27 and 28 March 2003.
Statement of Objections and replies
On 3 May 2007 the Commission adopted a Statement of Objections, which was addressed to 4 legal entities (Bayer AG, Zeon Corporation, Zeon Europe GmbH and Zeon Chemicals Europe Ltd). In the Statement of Objections, the Commission took the preliminary view that the undertakings concerned had participated in a single complex and continuous infringement of Article 81(1) EC between 9 October 2000 and 30 September 2003 and announced its intention to adopt an infringement decision and to impose fines.
The Parties were granted a deadline of four weeks to reply to the Statement of Objections following receipt of a DVD containing the main part of the Commission's file. All Parties replied in due time.
Access to file
Access to file was granted by way of a DVD sent to the parties and by access to certain documents at the Commission’s premises.
The parties did not request the opportunity to develop their arguments at an oral hearing.
Prior to the issuance of the Statement of Objections Zeon Corporation addressed a request under Article 9 of the Hearing Officers Mandate  that certain individual names of its employees should not be divulged. By letter dated 17 November 2006 I informed Zeon that in view of the proper exercise of right to be heard its request could only be partially accepted. Zeon did not pursue this issue further.
THE DRAFT DECISION
In my opinion the draft Decision relates only to objections in respect of which the parties have been afforded the opportunity to make known their views.
I consider that the parties right be right to be heard has been respected in this case for all participants to the proceedings.
Brussels, 11 January 2008.
 OJ C 45/3, 19.2.2002.
 Commission decision of 23 May 2001 on the terms of reference of hearing officers in certain competition proceedings, OJ L 162/21, 19.6.2001.