The 2nd International Competition Law Conference is being held on 28th April, 2012.
Competition Law has become one of the fastest growing areas of economic laws in the emerging economies. I am sure that the 2nd International Competition Law Conference will be an excellent opportunity for participants from India and overseas to understand the development and practice of Competition Law worldwide. This is crucial as inclusive growth is absolutely necessary for our sustained growth and progress.
The substance and practice of competition law vary from jurisdiction to jurisdiction. Consumer welfare, that is protecting the interest of the consumers and ensuring that entrepreneurs have an opportunity to compete in the market economy are often treated as important objectives. Competition Law is closely connected with law of deregulation of access to market, state aids and subsidies, the privatization of state owned assets and the establishment of independent sector and regulators. The World Bank in 1990 said that "competition is a situation in a market in which the firms or sellers independently strive for the buyers' patronage in order to achieve a particular business objective; for example, profits, sales or market share". The Supreme Court of US in the celebrated anti trust case of United States vs. Topco Associates, Inc. 405 US 596 observed that the "Antitrust laws are the Magna Carta of free enterprise. They are important to the preservation of economic freedom and our free enterprises system as the Bill of Rights is to the protection of our fundamental personal freedoms". Competition Law appears to have the foundation in Articles 38 and 39 of the Constitution of India, 1950 which form part of the Directive Principles of State Policy. There is no growth without competition and to advocate the message amongst one and all there must be what is conceived as "Competition brings prosperity".
The most important fact of the Competition Act, 2002 is that it aims at ensuring that consumers do not become victim of cartelisation and/or abuse of dominance. In that process it analyses conduct of big business houses.
As Pope Paul VI said "if you want peace, work for justice" Competition law is essentially an instrument that helps us to achieve that elusive goal.
On this occasion, I extend my greetings and felicitations to all those associated with the 2nd International Competition Law Conference and wish the event every success.