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International Cartel Enforcement: Lessons from the 1990s

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  • Simon J. Evenett

    (The World Bank)

  • Margaret C. Levenstein
  • Valerie Y. Suslow

Abstract

The enforcement record of the 1990s has demonstrated that private international cartels are neither relics of the past nor do they always fall quickly under the weight of their own incentive problems. Of a sample of forty such cartels prosecuted by the United States and European Union in the 1990s, twenty-four lasted at least four years. And for the twenty cartels in this sample where sales data are available, the annual worldwide turnover in the affected products exceeded US$30billion. Prevailing national competition policies are oriented towards addressing harm done in domestic markets, and in some cases merely prohibit cartels without taking strong enforcement measures. In this paper we propose a series of reforms to national policies and steps to enhance international cooperation that will strengthen the deterrents against international cartelization. Furthermore, aggressive prosecution of cartels must be complemented by vigilance in other areas of competition policy. If not, firms will respond to the enhanced deterrents to cartelization by merging or by taking other measures that lessen competitive pressures.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by University of Massachusetts Amherst, Department of Economics in its series UMASS Amherst Economics Working Papers with number 2001-01.

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Date of creation: 11 Jul 2001
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Handle: RePEc:ums:papers:2001-01

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  1. Louis Kaplow & Steven Shavell, 1999. "Economic Analysis of Law," NBER Working Papers 6960, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Dick, Andrew R, 1996. "When Are Cartels Stable Contracts?," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 39(1), pages 241-83, April.
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Cited by:
  1. Ajit SINGH, 2002. "Competition And Competition Policy In Emerging Markets: International And Developmental Dimensions," G-24 Discussion Papers 18, United Nations Conference on Trade and Development.
  2. Cook, Paul, 2002. "Competition Policy, Market Power and Collusion in Developing Countries," Centre on Regulation and Competition (CRC) Working papers 30681, University of Manchester, Institute for Development Policy and Management (IDPM).
  3. van Bergeijk, P.A.G., 2009. "What could anti-trust in the OECD do for development?," ISS Working Papers - General Series 18720, International Institute of Social Studies of Erasmus University Rotterdam (ISS), The Hague.
  4. Andreea Cosnita-Langlais & Jean-Philippe Tropeano, 2011. "Fight Cartels or Control Mergers? On the Optimal Allocation of Enforcement Efforts within Competition Policy," EconomiX Working Papers 2011-18, University of Paris West - Nanterre la Défense, EconomiX.
  5. BENCHEKROUN, Hassan & GAUDET, Gérard & LONG, Ngo Van, 2004. "Temporary Natural Resource Cartels," Cahiers de recherche 03-2004, Centre interuniversitaire de recherche en économie quantitative, CIREQ.
  6. Neubecker, Leslie, 2002. "The strategic effect of debt in dynamic price competition with fluctuating demand," Tübinger Diskussionsbeiträge 250, University of Tübingen, School of Business and Economics.
  7. Brenner, Steffen, 2009. "An empirical study of the European corporate leniency program," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 27(6), pages 639-645, November.
  8. Cai, Xiaowei & Stiegert, Kyle W., 2010. "Cartel Dissolution with Effective Antitrust Policy," 2010 Annual Meeting, July 25-27, 2010, Denver, Colorado 61297, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association.

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