Venue |  Cairns Convention Centre
Cnr Wharf & Sheridan Street
Cairns, Queensland, Australia

Background to the seminar
In reconfirming APEC leaders’ commitment to achieve the Bogor Goals of free and open trade and investment by 2010/2020, leaders endorsed the “APEC Principles to Enhance Competition and Regulatory Reform” in 1999. These principles provide a core part of the framework for strengthening our markets which will better integrate individual and collective actions by APEC economies to achieve the Bogor Goals.
In addition, APEC leaders have stressed the importance of promoting structural reform in APEC as an effective means of raising economic efficiency, enhancing consumer welfare and ensuring sustainable growth (see LAISR and the Ministerial Meeting Joint Statement, November 2004). In particular, APEC leaders have endorsed the Economic Committee’s LAISR 2010 initiative, which sets out a whole of APEC approach to coordinating structural reform activities. LAISR 2010 sets out competition policy as a key theme for APEC’s structural reform work programme in 2007. Furthermore, policy dialogue is included as one of the thematic work plans of competition policy in the LAISR 2010.

Purpose of the seminar
Competition policy is concerned with all facets of government policy which influences the competitive behaviour and competitive environment of firms, individuals and government agencies engaged in the supply of traded goods and services in the economy.
Effective competition is fundamental to the efficient operation of markets. Competition provides a stimulus for businesses to improve their performance and to reduce their prices so as to obtain an advantage over rivals. Thus, it encourages the development of new or improved products, processes and services in markets.
Active and effective enforcement of competition policy when undergoing structural reform is required to secure such a competitive environment. It contributes to strengthen economic activities, to promote economic growth and efficiency, and to encourage the introduction of more active competition in the covered sectors. It also makes the Asia-Pacific region more attractive to trade and investment. The purpose of the seminar is to increase understanding of recent development of effective enforcement of competition policy through sharing knowledge, experiences and lessons on competition policy, and to raise awareness of the economic importance of competition policy and role that competition policy plays in achieving structural reform.


Opening and general introduction
Professor Bob Buckle Chair of Economic Committee
Mr. Toshiyuki Nanbu Chair of Competition Policy and Deregulation Group

Session 1:
What is competition policy and why is it important to the economy?
Chair: Ms. Tomoko Hayashi Director, Cabinet Office, Japan & Vice Chair of Economic Committee

In order to promote the establishment of competition policy, a sound explanation of its economic benefits is necessary. This session will focus on developing participants’ understanding of the importance of competition policy and the role it plays in structural reform. It will aim to raise participants’ awareness of the objective of competition policy, its interaction with structural reform, and its overall importance to the economy. Through discussion, it is expected that the economic benefits of competition policy in the APEC region will be identified more clearly.

Speaker Economy/Organisation
Mr. Bernard Phillips Head of the OECD Competition Committee OECD

Session 2:
Important elements of an effective competition regime
Chair: Ms. Elley Mao Principal Economist, Financial Secretary's Office, Hong Kong, China & Vice Chair of Economic Committee

This session will focus on the elements of a sound competition regime such as institutional arrangements and independent enforcement authorities. The session will commence with a theoretical discussion on the important elements of a sound competition regime, followed by the practical experiences of the implementation of competition policies in two developed economies.

Speaker Economy/Organisation
Dr. Stephen Corones Professor of Law at Queensland University of Technology, Australia Australia
Mr. Brian Cassidy CEO of Australian Competition and Consumer Commission Australia
Dr. Koki Arai Competition official from Fair Trade Commission, Japan Japan

Session 3:
Development of competition policy and law in APEC economies – Perspectives from member economies
Chair: Dr. Sean Ennis Senior Economist, Competition Division, OECD

The purpose of this session is to generate discussion as to what activities are required to promote competition policy in the APEC region. It is not always easy for an economy to implement a theoretically-desirable competition policy due to practical barriers. This session will provide information on the status of development of competition law in the APEC region, focusing on the experiences of developing economies in implementing a competition regime. Speakers from developed and developing economies will present their experiences and challenges in establishing their domestic competition policy. Through discussion, best practices from member economies could be shared and clues to fill the gap between theory and practice might be identified.
At the end of session 3, participants will be invited to break into groups and be presented with questions for discussion.
Following the refreshment break, groups will discuss the questions and then present on their discussion.

Speaker Economy/Organisation
Mr. Toshiyuki Nanbu Chair of CPDG CPDG
Mr. Tran Anh Son Deputy General Director of the Competition Administration Department for the Ministry of Trade of Vietnam Vietnam
Mr. Mohammad Iqbal Chairman of Supervision of Business Competition (Indonesian Competition Commission) Indonesia
Mr. Ong Beng Lee Chief Executive of the Competition Commission of Singapore Singapore

Session 4:
Group & Panel Discussion on the role APEC can play in promoting competition policy in member economies
Chair: Mr. Steve French General Manager, Competition and Consumer Policy Division, Australian Treasury

Participants will be invited to break into groups and will be presented with questions for discussion. During the break-out session, participants will be asked to discuss the following discussions:
1) What are the major challenges in implementing a competition regime?
2) What are the kinds of assistance/tools required to overcome these challenges?
3) What kind of assistance can the Economic Committee and CPDG of APEC offer to assist member economies in introducing a sound competition regime?
Following the discussions of the break-out groups, each group will be asked to report on its discussions, which will be a way of opening the broader panel discussion. The panel will be composed of academics and officials. Once groups have provided their reports, panellists will be asked to reflect and discuss the comments provided by groups, focusing on how APEC can assist in introducing a sound competition regime in member economies.

Panel Discussion/Group Discussion Economy/Organisation
Break-out session for groups
Presentation of group discussions
Panel discussion
Mr. Ong Beng Lee Chief Executive of Competition Commission of Singapore Singapore
Mr. Mohammad Iqbal Chairman of Supervision of Business Competition (Indonesian Competition Commission) Indonesia
Ms. Graciela Ortiz President of the Competition Chamber of the Peruvian Institute for the Defense of Competition and Protection of Intellectual Property Rights Peru
Mr. Bernard Phillips Head of the OECD Competition Committee OECD

Session 5:
Concluding session and overview
Professor Bob Buckle Chair of Economic Committee