The fifth round of EU-US trade negotiations have ended and the 6th round is due to begin in the middle of July. Robert Lawrence, Professor at the Harvard Kennedy School, joins us to discuss TTIP. In his presentation Professor Lawrence will consider both the problems and the potential the TTIP presents for the global trading system.
The heads of several national competition authorities have called for more convergence on substantive assessment of evidence in antitrust proceedings and on a methodology for fine setting. The new directive on private damages actions emphasizes the role of national courts and the necessity for a common European framework with coordinated antitrust action. In this competition policy lab we will discuss experiences of anti-cartel enforcement at national and EU level. Starting from there, we will ask the question of how the fight against cartels in Europe can be enhanced, what are the right tools that national and EU competition authorities should use and whether improved coordination and information sharing between authorities can truly help stepping up deterrence. President Giovanni Pitruzzella, head of AGCM, the Italian Antitrust Authority, and Eric Vanginderachter, Director of Cartels at DG Competition will present and discuss the Italian and European Commission experiences. Both authorities have recently been very active in this area of enforcement: this year, the Italian Authority imposed a record fine of €182.5 million to Novartis and La Roche for a cartel over eye drug; the Authority also recently opened an investigation for alleged collusion over interest rates amongst 6 regional banks in Northern Italy and it launched a call for input for the design of guidelines on the quantification of antitrust sanctions. On the European Commission side, major decisions were adopted in the last months: Libor/Euribor, automotive bearings, high-voltage power cables, to mention some, and important investigations in alleged collusive behaviours such as price-benchmarking for raw-materials, are currently ongoing.
A new era for global trade appears to be emerging. The rise of multi-polarity has revived global interest in trade regionalism in this decade, in particular in the industrialised world that has lost patience with the long-drawn Doha Round of WTO negotiations. In a world of finite political focus, infinite trade negotiations appear unsustainable. However, with the rise of mega-regional trade agreements, the continued fragmentation of the world trade system will likely more closely resemble a jigsaw puzzle. Even in the best-case scenario where these agreements get concluded as desired, success unfortunately will have merely replaced the spaghetti-bowl mess at the regional levels with one at the global level. To resolve this, how should the process of global consolidation of the regional agreements occur? What in particular is the future of trade multilateralism, especially in view of the fact that cross-regional link-ups of mega-blocs have no precedent, and WTO system may not be able to manage it well? Finally, what should be the role of emerging market economies in designing the 21st century trade governance, and how should the industrialised countries manage the challenge of integrating emerging markets into the global system? These are some of the questions that the eminent panellists at this workshop will attempt to answer.
The financial crisis has highlighted the longstanding challenge of resolving large and complex financial institutions which tend to be, as the saying goes, “international in life but national in death”. While this challenge is partly addressed within the EU by the Single Resolution Mechanism and the Bank Recovery & Resolution Directive, it raises different questions at the global level. The Financial Stability Board is tackling it through ground-breaking work on “ending TBTF”, including the distinction between single-point-of-entry and multiple-points-of-entry resolution approaches and the introduction of minimum requirements for “gone-concern loss-absorbing capital” (GLAC) which are still being debated.
Europe, the way ahead will be on the focus of this year’s Bruegel annual meeting. In the fall and after the European election, a new leadership will come into office. It will be time to reflect on the next steps Europe should take to overcome its weak growth performance; to re-invent its institutions and the collaboration process among them; to address the remaining banking problems; and also to revive the debate on the constitution and legitimacy of Europe. At the annual meeting, we would like to have an open and frank debate. High-level representatives of Bruegel's state;corporate and institutional members will gather;on 4-5 September in Brussels;to discuss the economic issues that will shape Europe under the new leadership and in the context of new global challenges. September 4 (on the record)
Japan’s economy has experienced long-term stagnation for over 20 years. Since Autumn 2012, drastic economic policies known as ‘Abenomics’ have been enforced to break this pattern. Meanwhile inflation in the EU is an alarming indicator of a possible deflationary phase that could cripple economic activity. These phenomena are similar to those experienced in Japan in the 1990s. This conference offers the possibility to deepen our economic understanding of two major economies facing similar problems and opportunities. <br/> <br/> This event is jointly organised with the Graduate School of Economics, Kobe University Conference. <br/>