Antitrust Merger Policy Lessons from the Australian Experience

Philip L. Williams and Graeme Woodbridge

in Governance, Regulation, and Privatization in the Asia-Pacific Region

Published by University of Chicago Press

Published in print March 2004 | ISBN: 9780226386799
Published online February 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780226386966 | DOI:
Antitrust Merger Policy Lessons from the Australian Experience

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This chapter addresses the following question: If a nation is contemplating antitrust merger policy, does the experience of Australia offer any guidance as to how value might be maximized? In drawing on Australia's experience, it focuses on the success of Australian policy in distinguishing between mergers that enhance efficiency and mergers that enhance monopoly power. Two criteria are necessary for antitrust merger policy to enhance value. First, the criteria for assessing mergers should direct the regulators or the courts to allow those mergers that promote economic efficiency and to disallow those mergers that promote monopoly power. Second, the process of assessment should be able to be conducted in a way that maintains confidentiality (until the merger is made public by the firms involved) and is speedy. The chapter explains the formal processes of Australian antitrust merger policy and how it performs against these twin sets of criteria. Two commentaries are also included at the end of the chapter.

Keywords: Australia; antitrust merger policy; efficiency; monopoly

Chapter.  14170 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Business and Management

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