MANILA, 18 July 2014 – The 4th ASEAN Competition Conference brought together competition experts and public-private stakeholders from ASEAN, Australia, New Zealand, Japan, Republic of Korea, US, EU and international entities such as UNCTAD and the OECD, to discuss the experiences of ASEAN Member States (AMS) in Competition Policy and Law (CPL) enforcement and share knowledge on remedies and innovative methodologies to combat anticompetitive conducts. It was convened from 16-17 July with the theme “Building Blocks for Effective Enforcement of CPL.”
Spearheaded by the ASEAN Experts Group on Competition (AEGC), the annual ASEAN Competition Conference aims to promote competition policy for regional development and shape the direction of CPL implementation within ASEAN. This year’s conference “provided a platform to learn on how to improve the implementation of the existing competition-related laws and further develop national competition policies, noting the divergent development gaps amongst AMS,” said Mr. Geronimo L. Sy, Assistant Secretary and Head of Office for Competition of the Department of Justice (DOJ-OFC) of the Philippines.
Mr. Sy further welcomed the opportunity to share experiences and perspectives given that the Philippines is currently moving towards the enactment of a unified competition law. “It is important for all businesses and the consuming public to appreciate why it is important to punish and deter all forms of anticompetitive conduct or agreements in the market,” he added.
Ms. Kejpiroon Kohsuwan of Thailand, the current chair of the AEGC, presented an overview of the regional framework of CPL in ASEAN as well as the key initiatives and deliverables of the AEGC under the ASEAN Economic Community Blueprint 2009-2015.
Various strategies including both public and private enforcement perspectives on innovative approaches for detecting and deterring anticompetitive conduct, ways to enhance national competition agencies, and options to strengthen international cooperation in this area were deliberated.
In the run-up towards the establishment of the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) 2015, the importance of advocating ASEAN’s efforts on CPL to various stakeholders, in particular the business community at large was highlighted.
It was further emphasized that the goals and aspirations to intensify the development of competition policy in the region remains and expected to progress, with the development of an ASEAN Competition Action Plan Post-2015. Moving forward, the necessity to have common core elements with respect to the legal frameworks on CPL amongst ASEAN Member States was recognised.
The 4th ACC was hosted by the Philippines through the DOJ-OFC and supported jointly by the ASEAN-Australia-New Zealand Free Trade Area (AANZFTA) Economic Cooperation Support Program (AECSP) and the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH, with funding from the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) of Germany.
For more information, visit: the AEGC website www.aseancompetition.org