The American Antitrust Institute's statement “A National Competition Policy: Unpacking the Problem of Declining Competition and Setting Priorities Moving Forward” resets the debate over the importance of antitrust enforcement and competition policy in the United States.
President Obama’s April 2016 Executive Order highlighting concerns over declining competition was a “call to arms” and a reminder that competition is a political issue that the next administration must address.
The AAI’s National Competition Policy statement leverages the consciousness-raising intent of the Executive Order and unpacks the increasingly high-profile problems that are symptomatic of declining competition, including rising concentration, declining rates of market entry, and growing inequality.
The statement suggests three core principles for a National Competition Policy and sets out seven priorities that should guide the new approach. The AAI’s priorities range from facilitating more aggressive and consistent enforcement to revitalizing the tools available to antitrust enforcers. The AAI also notes the importance of preserving the vital role of private antitrust enforcement, recognizing new sources and abuses of market power, and ramping up antitrust penalties and remedies.
The AAI’s 2016 Presidential Transition Report on Competition Policy, which contains detailed recommendations for specific areas of competition enforcement, can be found here.