Trade and International Competition Policy

International competition policy is aimed at prohibiting private activities that restrict or distort competition particulary as they affect trade. It is both a process of harmonizing national competition policies and a goal of negotiating a multinational agreement on antitrust policy. Although every industrialized nation has national antitrust and competition laws, there is no consensus on the need for, shape of, or reach of an international competition policy. The World Trade Organization is exploring the possibility of including competition policy in its negotiating agenda. Congressional action on competition policy centers mainly on its oversight of trade, economic, and antitrust relations with foreign countries. This report will be updated as events warrant.