Independence and Advocacy
This chapter examines the issue of the relationship between the independence of competition authorities and their ability to advocate for competition. It argues that the model of competition authorities as institutions independent of the executive branch of government focused mostly on the anticompetitive practices of firms. Under such models, competition authorities are largely left out of the policy debate and are not consulted on a range of issues that may affect the competitive environment. Whether this is a good or a bad thing is open to debate, and the answer partly rests on an assumption about the respective roles of law enforcement and advocacy in shaping a more competitive environment for the future. The chapter suggests that the model of a competition authority independent of the executive, but in charge of both antitrust enforcement and competition advocacy, may need to be revised. A better model would separate the functions and include an independent enforcer and an administrative body in charge of competition advocacy.
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