The third Annual Meeting of the Working Group on Trade and Competition (WGTC) will take place in Buenos Aires, Argentina from 24 to 25 September 2013.
To date, four Regional Seminars on Trade and Competition have been held: in April 2009 in Caracas, Venezuela; in May 2010 in Brasilia, Brazil, organized jointly by SELA Permanent Secretariat and UNCTAD, and CADE-Brazil; in July 2011 in Bogota, Colombia, organized jointly by SIC and in June 2012 in Lima with INDECOPI. Ministers and senior officials of institutions responsible for Competition and Trade policies participated. All Seminars concluded with a series of recommendations aimed at enhancing cooperation between the Competition and Trade areas, and among all SELA country members. In particular, a proposal was made at the end of the Second Regional Seminar to establish a Working Group on Trade and Competition (WGTC) within SELA, which would count on the substantive support of UNCTAD.
On 19 October 2010, SELA’s Council endorsed and created the WGTC. The mandate of the WGTC is to establish contact and dialogue between trade and competition officials of SELA countries (among which, COMPAL countries); to agree on collective actions needed to fight cross-border anti-competitive business practices; to promote studies at regional level on issues of interest to trade and competition authorities; and to share information and experiences as regards these two policy areas
This year's WGTC will cover the following topics:
- Trade and Competition policies in the energy markets
- Internal and External Coherence between Trade and Competition Policies
- Competition and Trade Issues in Relation to Health Sector in SELA Member Countries
- Need of institutional capacity building for Trade and Competition authorities of SELA member countries (Sub-Working Group 3)
- Trade and Competition policies in telecommunications
- Benefits of Trade and Competition policies in the provision of goods and services and the promotion of small and medium-sized enterprises (SME).
- Recent institutional reforms in competition and trade which affect public policy making.
· Competition and Trade cases involving more than one SELA member country.
UNCTAD expects two main outcomes of this session:
· to continue providing the unique forum for dialogue between trade and competition authorities of SELA members and sub-regional institutions from the Latin American and Caribbean Regions.
· to foster and give continuity to the activities and plan strategies for future work that can foster effective cooperation between and among competition agencies department handling Trade issues.
Participants: Representatives from Trade and Competition Authorities of SELA member countries. ECLAC representative as well as the Head of the Competition Authority of Switzerland.