Why Should Legal Standards in Antitrust Enforcement be Different in Developing than in Mature Jurisdictions: A Decision-Theoretic Approach

Yannis Katsoulacos
Yannis Katsoulacos Emeritus Professor, Athens University of Economics and Business. Affiliated Chair Professor Jiangxi University of Finance and Economics. Former Commissioner of Hellenic Competition Commision. Email:

Relying on recent developments in the literature of the choice of assessment procedures (or, legal standards, LS) for reaching liability decisions in competition law enforcement, this article shows that the adoption of presumption-based LSs, that is, LSs that are closer to Per Se than to Effects-Based, in developing jurisdictions, than the standards that would be optimal in developed jurisdictions, is consistent with the principles of minimising the costs of decision errors, as well as resulting in lower enforcement costs.

En base a desarrollos recientes de la literatura sobre la elección de procedimientos de evaluación (o estándares legales, LS) para tomar decisiones de responsabilidad en aplicación de leyes de competencia, este artículo muestra que, en jurisdicciones en desarrollo,  la adopción de LS basadas en presunciones, es decir, LS que están más cerca del Per Se que aquellas basadas en los efectos, es consistente con los principios de minimizar los costos de errores de decisión, además de resultar en menores costos de ejecución, en comparación a los estándares que serían óptimos en jurisdicciones desarrolladas.

» (…) Per Se LSs should be used in jurisdictions in which other barriers are relatively high (prevalence of contestability is low), since in the latter the presumption of illegality of these conducts –i.e. presumption that they create harm– is much higher with cost of false convictions more likely to be lower than the cost of false acquitals»