The United Nations Set

Since the United Nations General Assembly adopted unanimously the Set of Multilaterally Agreed Equitable Principles and Rules for the Control of Restrictive Business Practices (The UN Set) in December 1980, (GA, Resolution 35/63) the challenges and opportunities experienced by developing countries have been radically transformed by globalisation and the liberalisation of international trade and investment.

The United Nations Set is to date the only multilateral instrument on competition policy. It provides a set of equitable rules for the control of anti-competitive practices, recognises the development dimension of competition law and policy, provides a framework for international cooperation and exchange of best practices in this area, including the provision of technical assistance and capacity building for interested member countries.

The Seventh UN Conference to Review All Aspects of the Set offers the opportunity to address some of the problems arising from monopolisation, hard core cartels, abuses of dominance and anti-competitive mega-mergers, and defines the types of national and international measures needed to ensure that anti-competitive practices do not impede or negate the realisation of benefits that should arise from the liberalisation of trade and investment in developing countries.

35th Anniversary (1980-2015)
UNCTAD's work on competition and consumer protection dates from the adoption of the United Nations Set in 1980.