The Transplantability of the EU's Competition Law Framework into the ASEAN Region
Forthcoming in: Burton Ong (ed.), The Regionalisation of Competition Policy and Law and ASEAN (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press 2017)
26 Pages Posted: 28 Sep 2016
Date Written: September 19, 2016
The European Union is the home of the most experienced supranational competition law system of the world. Hence, other regional integration systems often look at the EU as a role model for designing their regional competition policies. However, this does not necessarily argue in favor of a ‘copy-and-paste’ adoption of the European framework. To learn from the EU implies taking into account both the European experience and the socio-economic and political circumstances of the relevant region for the purpose of designing a tailor-made regional competition policy. Accordingly, European experience demonstrates that certain decisions need to be made, such as on the scope of application of the regional competition law, its relationship with the national competition law systems, its institutional design and its enforcement mechanisms. ASEAN has chosen to implement a regional competition policy framework as part of its project to create an ASEAN single market and an ASEAN Economic Community. However, ASEAN’s approach to competition law is limited to convergence. Its biggest achievement consists in the adoption of competition legislation in the ASEAN countries. This article discusses whether and to what extent ASEAN should now go a step further and ‘transplant’ the EU competition law framework. The answer depends on a number of considerations such as the goals of creating a supranational competition law, the degree and potential of economic integration of the national economies, the level of economic development of these economies, the development of a competition culture in these countries, the comparative advantages of centralised and decentralised enforcement and the willingness of ASEAN countries to surrender sovereignty in the field of competition law.
Keywords: Competition law, European Union, ASEAN, legal transplants, regional integration
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