Will IMF Requirement that Ireland Strengthen Competition Law Sanctions Actually Make a Difference?

October 31, 2011

(by Andreas Stephan) The Republic of Ireland is facing the most serious economic crisis in its history. In order to deal with its sovereign debt crisis, it has had to accept a painful and far reaching Programme of Financial Support from the EU and the IMF. As part of this, Ireland is required to “introduce reforms to legislation to empower judges to improve fines and other sanctions in competition cases in order to generate more credible deterrence” (p24). This is an odd requirement for a country which is arguably ahead of the UK and other larger EU Member States in the development of its competition enforcement regime. It raises the question of whether higher competition sanctions really will make a difference to the Irish recovery. Read the rest of this entry »