Initiated by Vice-President Margrete Vestager and the Directorate-General for Competition with Mr. Olivier Guersant, young competition experts and scientists of tomorrow discussed topics such as expanding powers of antitrust authorities and increasing control in digital markets. In this half-day conference, today's competition experts such as Professor Hildebrand, EE&MC, had the opportunity to exchange ideas with the competition experts of tomorrow.
What will EU competition policy look like in the future?
"I am impressed by the quality of the presentations and the mature view of the young experts on sustainability and data power in competition law. The young experts suggested, for example, to increase the powers of the antitrust authorities or to change EU competition law to integrate green aspects into the consumer welfare standard in Article 101 (3) of the EU Treaty." Professor Hildebrand contributed and gratulated the young experts for organising such an interesting conference.
From an economic perspective, such an adjustment of the legal structures is not necessary. The revolution of young experts can be done much more gently. If, for example, we replace consumers by "citizens", as the German Federal Court of Justice did in its Facebook ruling, non-quantifiable aspects such as sustainability or data protection can also be integrated into an assessment under Article 101 (3) of the EU Treaty. However, the demand of the young experts representing the future EU competition policy experts clearly shows that adjustments have to be made.
"Taking Competition Policy into the Future" thus stimulates a broad debate on how competition policy can evolve in the coming decade to further strengthen economies.
The conference was chaired by eight young experts who, in 2019 and 2021, stood out and won from over 100 applicants the Student Challenges of the Directorate-General for Competition. On 17 January 2019, our colleague Ms. Oriane Limouzin was one of the four winners of the student competition "Shaping competition policy in the age of digitization". For the event Ms. Limouzin accepted the invitation to an independent scientific committee. Together with the winners from 2019 and 2021, she took the opportunity to select the topics and speakers for the event and to lead the conference "Taking Competition Policy into the Future".