More Common Ground for International Competition Law?
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More Common Ground for International Competition Law?

Edited by Josef Drexl, Warren S. Grimes, Clifford A. Jones, Rudolph J.R. Peritz and Edward T. Swaine

In recent years, an impressive proliferation of competition laws has been seen around the world. Whilst this development may lead to greater diversity of approaches, economic arguments may promote convergence. The contributions to this book look at a number of the most topical issues by asking whether the competition world is turning more towards convergence or diversity. These issues include, among others, the changing role of economics in times of economic crises and political change, the introduction of criminal sanctions, resale-price maintenance, unilateral conduct and the application of competition law to intellectual property and state-owned enterprises.
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Chapter 15: International Antitrust Solutions: Discrete Steps or Causally Linked?

Michal S. Gal


Michal S. Gal* 1 INTRODUCTION In the past two decades a growing number of jurisdictions explored and experimented with solutions to competition problems created by the internationalization of trade. The level of cooperation among jurisdictions has arisen in parallel with the realization that unilateral enforcement provides a limited solution to competition law challenges with an extra-territorial dimension. Indeed, increasing levels, or ‘steps’, of international antitrust cooperation have been taken or have been suggested, ranging from unilateral extra-territorial enforcement of domestic laws to the yet theoretical possibility of a supra-national competition authority. The step analogy suggests that lower steps lead to higher ones. This chapter explores to what extent this is true: whether international competition law solutions based on lower levels of cooperation provide a catalyst and sometimes even a basis for higher ones, or whether cooperation levels are not causally linked to each other. It does so, inter alia, by focusing on one specific cooperative competition law solution: regional competition law agreements and exploring their effects on higher cooperative steps. Accordingly, the first part of the chapter identifies five different levels of international antitrust cooperation. The second part focuses on a specific example of such cooperation: regional competition law agreements. The proliferation of such agreements in recent years is so profound that it can be termed ‘the new wave of regionalism’.1 The third part ties the two previous ones together by exploring whether and to what extent regional * The author would like to thank Doron Rentsler for excellent research assistance....

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