Competition, Innovation and Intellectual Property… The Elusive Balance

By Sir Philip Lowe – 

In this article, Philip Lowe assesses the progress made so far in promoting international convergence in antitrust law and practice. Considerable efforts have been made to reach consensus between jurisdictions, both on substance and process. The OECD and the International Competition Network have played an important role in this. Despite the many differences between countries, it has been possible on a pragmatic basis to devise remedies to antitrust problems on global markets which make sense for businesses and for consumers in all jurisdictions. But there is still a long way to go. Finding the right balance between protecting IP rights and promoting competition and follow-on innovation is a difficult task, even within a single jurisdiction. But we cannot believe simultaneously in competition, innovation and protection of IP rights without achieving this elusive balance.

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