Chairperson, NCLAT, Justice Ashok Bhushan, inaugurates 8th BRICS International Competition Conference 2023 in New Delhi

Strong antitrust enforcement is an essential element of overall public policy design: Justice Ashok Bhushan

Chairperson, National Company Law Appellate Tribunal (NCLAT), Justice Ashok Bhushan, inaugurated the 8th BRICS International Competition Conference (BRICS ICC) 2023, in New Delhi today. The Competition Commission of India (CCI) is hosting the Conference on the theme, New Issues in Competition Law and Policy – Dimensions, Perspective, Challenges, from 11th – 13th October, 2023.  

The conference has brought together heads and officials of BRICS competition authorities, competition policy experts, representatives of international organisations, and other stakeholders from across continents to enable the exchange of insights on the new and emerging areas of importance in competition law and policy.

Addressing the conference, Justice Ashok Bhushan stressed the importance of strengthening cooperation and collaboration in the realm of competition policy, while underscoring the pivotal role played by the BRICS group in integrating the efforts of its members on mutual cooperation and deliberations on the issues of common interest.

Highlighting the critical gateway position of digital platforms and their control over data and market access points, Justice Ashok Bhushan mentioned that strong antitrust enforcement is an essential element of overall public policy design. In this regard, international cooperation and exchange would help reduce possibilities of regulatory arbitrage and keep abreast of regulatory developments in other jurisdictions, he said.

Referring to sustainability as a critical concern in the present century, Justice Ashok Bhushan mentioned that the incorporation of sustainability into competition law has the potential to stimulate innovation, and development of cleaner technologies, renewable energy sources, and sustainable solutions across various industries. Effective cooperation amongst the BRICS nations in striking the right balance between promoting sustainability and competition is pertinent, in order to deal with the complex challenges, he added. He concluded by stating that the NCLAT as the Appellate Authority for CCI orders has contributed significantly towards the evolving competition jurisprudence in India.   

Delivering the welcome address, Chairperson, CCI, Smt. Ravneet Kaur referred to the theme of the conference and said that new issues in competition law and policy are closely aligned with emerging economic priorities. She alluded to the key imperatives of creating an inclusive digital paradigm and environmentally sustainable economic growth.

Recognising that digital technology can be a force multiplier in achieving growth, inclusion and innovation, Chairperson CCI said that sharing of experiences would be crucial in optimising the efforts of competition authorities in keeping digital markets competitive and contestable. She stressed the need for building collective capacity in the fields of artificial intelligence, blockchains and algorithms.

In the context of sustainability, Smt. Kaur underscored the role that competition authorities need to play to ensure that enterprises can build green businesses without any anti-competitive barriers. In view of the growing cross-border dimension of the competition authorities’ work, she emphasised the importance of international cooperation in this field.

The two-day conference features three plenary sessions on ‘BRICS Joint Documents (Leniency Programme & Digital Economy Reports)’, ‘New Issues in Competition Law & Policy in the BRICS Countries’ & ‘Promoting Soft law tools to create a pro-competitive environment in the markets’ and four breakout sessions on topics of competition analysis in digital economy, sustainability and climate change, role of market studies and challenges in merger control.

In the plenary session on BRICS Joint Documents, reports on the Leniency Programme and Digital Economy were released and discussed. The report on the Review of Leniency Programs in the BRICS countries highlights the significance of Leniency Programs in detecting cartels for BRICS competition authorities. International cartel investigations involve multiple jurisdictions and competition authorities, underscoring the need for a shared understanding to navigate complex inquiries effectively.

Addressing the plenary session, Chairperson CCI said that the CCI recognizes the dynamic nature of digital markets and the importance of innovation in their development. Simultaneously, it acknowledges the susceptibility of digital markets to anti-competitive practices. The session was also addressed by Mr. Victor Oliveira Fernandes, Commissioner, CADE Brazil, Mr. Maxim Shaskolsky, Head, FAS Russia, Ms. Gan Lin, Vice Minister of SAMR, Administrator of the State Anti-Monopoly Administration, China and Ms. Doris Tshepe, Commissioner, CCSA.  

Disclaimer: This is an official press release by Pib.

Digpu News Staff

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