Competition policy is on the WTO agenda for the Doha Round, but it is unlikely that it will result in any substantive international standards; the goal, instead, seems to be to agree on core principles to guide the development of national law, including transparency, non-discrimination, and procedural fairness, perhaps extending to special and differential treatment for developing countries. While there is much to commend these principles, this paper takes a deliberately contrarian view, arguing that core principles are not at all where WTO competition policy should begin. It further disputes the appropriateness of applying an emerging meta-principle of the WTO constitution, that of bargaining for a "single undertaking," to competition policy. If antitrust is to be pursued globally, it should be addressed by principles and through negotiations tailored to its distinctive needs.
Edward T. Swaine, Against Principled Antitrust, 43 Va. J. Int'l L. 959 (2003).