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Overview - Global Competition Forum 

Founded in 1991, the Global Forum for Competition and Trade Policy consists of a group of experts representing the key interests of economists, lawyers, academics, practitioners and national and international policy-makers who are committed to expanding the global discussion of the ramifications of competition policy for global trade and investment.


Competition policy is a crucial ingredient in national and international policy deliberations.

It is increasingly viewed by countries and international organisations such as the International Bar Association, the World Bank, the OECD, and UNCTAD as a process which requires elaboration and convergence.

The potential for harmonisation of domestic competition policies is also seen as a critical area for all trading nations, including the newly-emerging and rapidly-industrialising economies, in view of the costs and inefficiencies created when these domestic policies collide. The resulting frictions have given rise to significant problems relating to international enforcement and sharply-increased transaction costs for transnational business. The continued increase in foreign direct investment and transnational mergers will lead inevitably to their further increase.

The Global Forum for Competition and Trade Policy will provide a direction for change, and its efforts are directed at the reduction of the frictions between different national legal systems. Members include

  • leading academic economists in North America, Europe and Japan who are pushing the frontiers of analysis of competition policy
  • current and former executive representatives of the world's principal Competition authorities
  • leading practitioners representing the multi-national enterprises affected by competition law
  • representatives and former representatives of national and enforcement agencies and international organisations

The aims of the Global Forum are to:

  • discuss key issues affecting competition policy
  • provide an information and education resource for countries or international organisations interested in understanding the implications of competition policy
  • act as a catalyst for change by producing scenarios involving process convergence, such as information exchanges, confidentiality requirements, and memoranda of understanding
  • establish a model worldwide competition process, which minimises distortions to business decisions, and protects competition

The Forum publishes papers and organises events aimed at discussion of the current issues, and allowing for discussion between experts of matters of relevance to competition and trade policy. Activities include:

  • analysing the economic and legal issues pertaining to the convergence and harmonisation of domestic competition policy
  • sponsoring and publishing a series of papers on global competition and trade issues, as well as proceedings of Forum events
  • drafting concrete proposals for implementation holding an annual meeting to discuss Papers and new insights
  • organising joint meetings with organisations such as the International Competition Network, the OECD, the World Bank, the European Union, UNCTAD, APEC, ADB, and national agencies of developed and developing countries

Funding and Sponsorship

Current funding for the Forum is provided by the International Bar Association.

The original three-year term of the project was funded by the Centre for Global Partnership of the Japan Foundation, the World Bank and the Canadian Competition Bureau, whose foresight began the project, and the Centre of Competition and Competitiveness at the University of California, Berkeley.

If you are interested in the work of the Global Competition Forum, please contact us at the e-mail address at gcf@int-bar.org

Project Directors

Michael J Reynolds Co-Chair, Global Forum for Competition and Trade Policy

J William Rowley QC Co-Chair, Global Forum for Competition and Trade Policy

R Shyam Khemani Advisor on Competition Policy, Private Sector Advisory Services, The World Bank Group, Washington, DC.

For further information please contact us at:

International Bar Association
10th Floor, 1 Stephen Street,
London W1T 1AT, United Kingdom
Tel: +44 (0)20 7691 6868
Fax: +44 (0)20 7691 6544



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