Key Issues

The "Set of Multilaterally Agreed Equitable Principles and Rules for the Control of Restrictive Business Practices", which was unanimously adopted by the United Nations General Assembly in its resolution 35/63 (December 1980), is so far the only fully multilateral instrument in existence on competition law and policy.

UNCTAD, in application of its mandate in the Set, holds the Intergovernmental Group of Experts on Competition Law and Policy (IGE) annually and organizes a Review Conference at Ministerial level every five years.

This year, the Seventh Review Conference will be held at the Palais des Nations in Geneva between 6 and 10 July 2015.


The Seventh Review Conference, which replaces the IGE for this year, is open to all member States of UNCTAD, as well as selected civil society and private sector representatives. Member State delegations are invited to include Ministers, as heads of delegations, as well heads of their competition and consumer protection authorities.

The Seventh Review Conference will, inter alia, assess the application and implementation of the United Nations Set on competition in its 35 years of existence, and discuss proposals for its improvement.

In accordance with the agreed conclusions of the fourteenth IGE, the Seventh Review Conference will take up the following issues for better implementation of the Set:

  • Ways and means to strengthen competition agencies in order to strengthen competition law enforcement and advocacy
  • International Cooperation on Merger cases as a tool for effective enforcement of competition law
  • The role of competition policy in promoting sustainable and inclusive growth
  • The Benefits and the Role of Competition for Consumers in the Pharmaceutical Sector
  • Feedback from recently peer-reviewed countries with competition agencies on enforcement and changes since the peer reviews
  • Voluntary Peer Reviews of Competition Law and Policy of Fiji, Papua New Guinea and Albania


The Conference will also hold an updated review of capacity-building and technical assistance, taking into account information to be received from member States no later than 30 May 2015:

  • A further revised and updated version of the Model Law on Competition
  • Further issues of the Handbook on Competition Legislation containing commentaries on national competition legislation in the form of a CD-ROM

As has become customary, the Seventh Review Conference is expected to adopt a comprehensive resolution, expressing consensus views on the United Nations Set and competition law and policy in general and giving guidance to the UNCTAD secretariat as to its activities in this field for the next five years.