Interaction with international organizations that are involved in development and protection of competition occupies a significant place in the international activities of the Antimonopoly Committee of Ukraine (hereinafter – the AMCU).
The purpose of such interaction is to seek advice, to get acquainted with new trends and methodologies of competition law implementation, to disseminate information on the achievements of Ukrainian competition policy, to conduct bilateral and multilateral consultations on the investigation of cases, as well as to improve the professional level of the AMCU`s staff members, in particular, through participation in specialized conferences and workshops.
Since 1994, the AMCU liaises with the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (hereinafter – the OECD), which among other things, deals with issues connected with development of competition, enhancing cooperation between national agencies that are monitoring compliance with competition laws, and supports policy aimed at protection of consumer rights and dissemination of information about goods and services.
Due to support of the OECD, employees of the AMCU`s have been able to systematically improve their qualification level, by participating in annual workshops held under the aegis of the OECD.
Since 2001, representatives of the AMCU have been participating in the sessions of the Global Forum on Competition, which is held in Paris, under the aegis of the OECD. The Global Forum on Competition was initiated by the OECD, influenced by the principal contemporary tendency to bring together the efforts of competition agencies and international organizations in the face of globalization and internationalization of the world economy. The OECD, by providing governments of the member-states with wide opportunities to raise their awareness about the full range of national policies and their impact on the international community, is currently expanding the range of participants of its discussions, by involving representatives of countries that are not members of the Organization.
In 2007, the OECD carried out the review on state of competition law and policy in Ukraine (OECD Reviews of Competition Law and Policy: Ukraine 2016), which was presented to the heads of competition agencies of the world and legal non-governmental organizations which are dealing with competition issues, during the Global Forum on Competition, on February 21, 2008.
Such a review is used as a means of analysis of the State’s progress on the way towards a market economy, its actual dedication to social values based on free enterprise.
As main results of the OECD Review of the state of Competition Law and Policy in Ukraine can be seen as following:
On January 27, 2009, the OECD`s review of the state of Competition Law and Policy in Ukraine was presented at the Antimonopoly Committee of Ukraine.
In addition to representatives of the AMCU, the presentation was attended by OECD experts, in particular, the Chairman of the Competition Division, the Delegation of the European Union to Ukraine, the leaders of EU technical assistance projects implemented in the AMCU, members of the Parliament of Ukraine, representatives of the Government of Ukraine, state authorities, legal and academic community, mass media.
Since 2011, Ukraine has acquired observer status (in accordance with the terms of the OECD resolution as of 09.10.2012, the observer status has been changed to participant status) and participates in sessions of the OECD Competition Committee and its working groups. The competence of the OECD Competition Committee includes, in particular, such areas of activities as discussion of current issues arising in national competition authorities, improvement of law enforcement in the field of protection of economic competition and development of international cooperation. Such activities of the Competition Committee are aimed at stimulation of the analytical work of national competition authorities and strengthening their interaction in the implementation of law enforcement activities.
At this moment, the priority task of AMCU in the field of cooperation with OECD is the acquirement of Ukraine's associate membership in the OECD Competition Committee. It is worth noting that membership in this OECD`s Committee is one of the mandatory conditions for a country's acquirement of full membership in the OECD.
In this context, it should be noted that since June 2016, within the framework of the international technical assistance project "Technical Assistance Program for Institutional Capacity Building of Ukraine in Law Enforcement and Competition Policy" (hereinafter – the Program), the OECD conducted the review of Ukraine's Implementation of Competition Law and Policy Recommendations which were provided on the basis of results of the OECD`s Review of Competition Law and Policy in Ukraine in 2008 and the UNCTAD`s Voluntary Peer Review of Competition Law and Competition Policy of Ukraine in 2013.
In particular, from June to September 2016, Program Advisor Stepan Lutsiv worked on a permanent basis in the Committee to prepare the Review. Moreover, from 18 to 22 July 2016, the OECD Mission headed by William Kovacic visited Ukraine to gather more detailed information, facts and materials needed to prepare the above-mentioned OECD Review. In preparation for the Review, more than 100 meetings of Program Advisers and OECD`s Mission representatives were held with participation of representatives of the Antimonopoly Committee of Ukraine, the Ministry of Economic Development and Trade, the National Energy and Utilities Regulation Commission, National Commission for State Regulation of Communications and Informatization, Public Council under the AMCU, public organizations, etc.
The results of the Review were presented by William Kovacic and Stepan Lutsiv on November 30, 2016 at the 126th meeting of the OECD`s Competition Committee. During the presentation, experts of the OECD noted significant progress in implementation of the OECD`s recommendations of 2008 and UNCTAD`s recommendations of 2013, including those related to increasment of transparency of the AMCU's activities, competition advocacy measures, improvement of merger control system, development and approval of recommendatory clarifications, as well as the establishment of legislative and organizational principles for the control of State aid.
The Review in Ukraine contributed to enhancing the image of the Antimonopoly Committee of Ukraine, ensuring greater transparency in its activities, enhancing international credibility, and improving the institutional model and mechanisms for implementing competition legislation.
On the basis of a review by OECD experts of Ukraine’s implementation of the recommendations in the area of competition law and policy, provided by the 2008 OECD Review of Competition Law and Policy in Ukraine and the 2013 UNCTAD Voluntary Peer Review of Competition Law and Policy in Ukraine, A Competition Law and Policy Review was prepared, which provided a number of recommendations to the Government of Ukraine and the AMCU on the further development of competition policy and legislation in Ukraine.
OECD`s CORE RECOMMENDATIONS FOR THE AMCU:
Procedures and law enforcement
Protection of fair competition