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WT/DS162/R/Add.1 Page 33


The United States notes, therefore, that the antidumping rules implicitly recognize that there is an accepted norm for the behaviour of governments in the broad multilateral trade context, i.e. a government should not pursue industrial policies which distort market structures or processes and thereby provide artificial advantages to domestic producers to the detriment of producers in other countries.  The antidumping rules also recognize that there should be a remedy for certain harms caused when different economic systems interact.  


According to the United States, competition laws, on the other hand, appropriately do not take these matters into consideration, and they do not address the underlying problems at which the antidumping rules are directed.  Instead, competition laws remedy private pricing practices which, in themselves, are objectionable because they are anti-competitive in an antitrust sense.


The United States points out that the primary objectives of competition policy, as expressed in competition laws, are to promote economic efficiency and to maximize consumer welfare through the optimal allocation of resources in competitive markets.  Through the protection of the competitive process, competition law helps to ensure productive, allocative, and distributional efficiencies throughout the economy.  Healthy competition, including potential competition, results in pressures to reduce costs and prices (static efficiency) and to introduce new and better products on the market (dynamic efficiency).


The United States argues that competition laws therefore are largely directed at the competitive practices of private firms and market structures, with the objective of assuring a competitive market.  In some countries, the competition laws have additional, less central objectives, such as the preservation of a decentralized economy, support of small businesses or maintenance of economic and social stability.


The United States acknowledges that the antidumping rules address certain private pricing practices as do the competition laws.  However, dumping practices are not anti-competitive in an antitrust sense.  The antidumping rules provide a remedy against injurious dumping as an indirect response to a foreign government's market-distortive industrial policies or differences in national economic systems.  As a result, although dumping by foreign producers can, for example, send false signals to the importing country's market that distort investment patterns, dumping practices will not normally qualify as "anti-competitive" when analysed under the distinct rules of most national competition laws.


The United States recalls that, in the Working Group on the Interaction between Trade and Competition Policy in 1998, the European Communities addressed the distinction between antidumping and competition rules:

"Anti-dumping law and competition law apply in different economic, legal and institutional contexts.  Competition law prohibits and subjects to strict penalties certain forms of pricing behaviour by firms.  While competition law applies in principle within the context of an integrated market, Antidumping law applies in an economic setting which is still characterized by border measures and other regulatory obstacles and distortions of trade."104


The United States notes that, in addition, during the meeting at which the Working Group considered these papers, a representative of the European Communities "reiterated that the submission by his delegation argued that antidumping rules and competition rules applied in different economic, legal and institutional contexts and that therefore there could be no question of the replacement of

104 The United States refers to document WT/WGTCP/W/78.

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