Robert Anderson, Counsellor, WTO Intellectual Property Division, World Trade Organization (WTO), Geneva
The world has changed. The sophistication and complexities of the 21st century business with an expanding international dimension require a revised approach to international and domestic policy making. The domains of trade and competition policies are no exception. Alongside the growth in international trade transactions, the number of cross-border mergers and antitrust cases with a global dimension has risen dramatically over the past decade. At the same time, the levels of wealth and income inequalities have never been greater. More than ever before, the time is ripe to evaluate how the international trade and antitrust domains can better reinforce each other in order to fulfil their potential to stimulate sustainable and inclusive growth leading to a broad based increase in living standards.
Up until now, the global trade and competition policy domains have largely been evolving in isolation in spite of the recognition that the benefits gained through trade liberalization in the past decades could easily be negated by restrictive and anti-competitive practices fostered by the private sector or national authorities behind country's borders. How can better coordination of efforts and collaboration between the two policy communities be accomplished?