OECD Workshop on Building Cartel Enforcement
The Vietnam Competition Authority cooperated with the OECD/Korea Policy Centre and the Competition Law Implementation Program to organize the Workshop Building Cartel Enforcement on March 30- April 1, 2016 in Hanoi, Vietnam. The Workshop avails participants with the chance to learn and share best practices on detecting, investigating and handling horizontal competition restriction agreements (cartel).
The Workshop was chaired by OECD representative and attended by nearly 70 participants from competition and competition-related agencies of more than economies including ASEAN Member States, Australia, China, Chinese Taipei, Japan, South Korea, Hong Kong, India, Mongolia, India, Pakistan, Bhutan. Moreover, domestic participants come from various relevant agencies like the court, Office of the Government, academia, law firms and so on.
Beginning the Workshop, Prof. Frédéiric Jenny, Chairman of OECD Competition Committee indicated negative impact of cartels as well as necessity of enhancing investigation and settlement against cartel behaviors. More emphasis was placed on big rigging – a topical issue in many economies now. Prof. Jenny also gave insights in some warnings faced by competition authorities in enforcement and suggested some remedies. It’s noteworthy that competition agencies and anti-corruption bodies can reinforce each other in fighting bid rigging cases. He also advised young competition agencies to build a strong record of enforcement before thinking about applying leniency program.
Mr. Ruben Maximiano, Senior Competition Expert, OECD delivered an informative presentation on detecting and handling cartels especially international cooperation in settling cross border cartels.
Furthermore, speakers from such developed competition agencies as ACCC, JFTC, KFTC shared best practices and experiences in cartel enforcement. Those are very practical and useful for participants from newly established competition agencies where the number of cases is still modest.
Breakout discussion sessions were well received by both international and national participants in the sense that more questions and concerns were raised and debated. Those sessions touched on topics like indirect evidence, leniency program, search and seizure operation, international cooperation in fighting cross border cartels. Using hypothetical exercises were utilized to get more interaction from participants.
The Workshop really benefited for domestic participants who are from competition-related agencies and have voices in promoting competition enforcement in Vietnam in the way that they heard about a lot of completed and on-going cases in various sectors from different economies. Presentations are therefore valuable sources of reference for those participants when returning to their daily work.
In overall, the Workshop was highly appreciated by participants. They had the opportunity to learn and share and more importantly have built networking relationship for follow-up activities.