ASCOLA Competition Law series
Edited by Roger Zäch, Andreas Heinemann and Andreas Kellerhals
Chapter 9: The Development of the World Economy and Competition Law
Rainer Geiger* INTRODUCTION 1 It is the purpose of this chapter to discuss the role of competition in a changing world economy. This analysis will reflect market globalisation, the emergence of new players, the challenges of sustainable development and the recent financial and economic crisis. Against this background, key features of competition law and policy will be highlighted. The chapter will conclude by offering some perspectives for the future. Can competition serve as a tool for recovery from recession? What role will it play in any necessary reshaping of economic policies and institutions? What will be the impact of large rescue plans being put in place to restore stability and growth? What will be the relationship to other policy instruments? Is there still scope for greater harmony of national policies? Should new initiatives for multilateral rules on competition be launched to strengthen the international trading system? What would be the interest of developing countries to support such initiatives? After decades of continuous growth in trade and investment, 2009 will be a year of recession, the most serious economic downturn since the end of the Second World War1. Real economic growth rates will be negative for many countries including some of the major economies. International trade and foreign direct investment are expected to decline significantly. Food and energy prices will remain volatile and unemployment is about to rise. It is not sure when economic stimulus packages will show their effects and whether new problems are not looming on the horizon. Government...
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