1. Handbook
  2. Subjects
  3. Internat and Comparative Competition Law

Internat and Comparative Competition Law (LAWS70301)

Graduate coursework level 7Points: 12.5On Campus (Parkville)

You’re viewing the 2019 Handbook:
Or view archived Handbooks


Year of offer2019
Subject levelGraduate coursework Level 7
Subject codeLAWS70301
Availability(Quotas apply)
FeesSubject EFTSL, Level, Discipline & Census Date

This subject will provide students with international and comparative insights into a field of growing significance to practitioners in Australia and the region. While the subject will focus on the federal antitrust law of the United States (‘US’) and the competition law of the European Union (‘EU’), we will examine also the extent to which these two regimes provide models for other regimes, with particular attention paid to the Anti-Monopoly Law of the People’s Republic of China ‘(PRC’). The subject will explore how competition laws are justified, and the extent to which different regimes converge and diverge, and the reasons for this. An understanding of the US and EU regimes will equip students to analyse the likely responses to anti-competitive actions in many other regimes, and the focus on China will be particularly useful to students within the Pacific region.

Principal topics will include:

  • The policy foundations of, and history of approaches to, antitrust law in the US and competition law in the EU
  • The structure of the two regimes, the role of competition authorities, and the role of public and private enforcement
  • Comparative analysis of the substantive laws relating to agreements and multi-lateral anti-competitive conduct (s 1 of the Sherman Act, and article 101 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union (‘TFEU’))
  • Comparative analysis of the approach taken to cartels, with an examination in particular of differing enforcement methods (civil and criminal)
  • Comparative approaches to the treatment of oligopolies, with particular reference to the concept of ‘conspiracies’ in the US, and ‘concerted practices’ in the EU
  • Comparative approaches to the control of monopolisation and dominant firm abuse (s 2 of the Sherman Act and article 102 of the TFEU), with particular reference to pricing conduct (excessive, predatory and discriminatory pricing practices)
  • The development, structure, and application of competition law in the PRC, including a consideration of the challenges facing new regimes
  • Comparative approaches to merger control in the US, EU and PRC, with particular reference to the establishment of jurisdiction, the operation of the substantive test, and the application of remedies
  • Jurisdiction, extra-territoriality, and bi-lateral and multi-lateral cooperation mechanisms in the application of competition law

Intended learning outcomes

A student who has successfully completed this subject will:

  • Have an advanced and integrated understanding of the similarities and differences between competition law systems around the world, mostly those of the United States and the European Union, and how they compare to the Australian system
  • Be able to critically examine, analyse, interpret and assess the effects of such different systems on global and national welfare
  • Have a sophisticated appreciation of the bases for and the limitations of extra-territorial application of competition law
  • Have an advanced understanding of the current global antitrust legal system, and have the cognitive and technical skills to generate critical and creative ideas relating to the benefits and costs of a variety of international enforcement and harmonisation proposals that are under consideration or are being implemented
  • Have the communication skills to clearly articulate and convey complex information regarding various aspects of international and comparative competition law to specialist and non-specialist audiences
  • Be able demonstrate autonomy, expert judgment and responsibility as a practitioner and learner in the field of international and comparative competition law.

Last updated: 23 August 2019