Block or embrace

Author: Olly Jackson | Published: 26 Feb 2019

Competition bodies are wrestling with protectionist policies and tech superpowers. They need a strategy soon

Technology is forcing a change in competition law enforcement. Along with strong actions from the European Commission, many believe that the rules themselves must also be adapted to address the threat posed by big tech firms, which are growing larger and more powerful by the year. The question is how laws can balance protecting consumers with allowing and encouraging companies to grow.

With competition law caught in the middle of a broader political divide – which is growing ever wider by the day – debate about its future is intensifying. Some strongly advocate a protectionist approach; others support a free trade-friendly, global approach. The rise of Eurosceptic politics is problematic for the European project and its various unification initiatives, threatening its fundamental principles; and competition law is in the crosshairs.

Beyond the most extreme opinions on monopolies,...