The need for an efficient functioning of markets has been gaining progressive recognition in the developing countries as a mechanism to supply goods and services at reasonable prices for consumers, inputs at competitive prices for producers and for levelling the playing field for potential competing companies, including small and medium-sized ones.
Between the 1950s and the 1980s, the control of prices, interest rates and imports in Latin America guaranteed the development of the national industry, as well as the access of population and producers to essential services and to banking credits at preferential rates. This situation became impossible to sustain after the mid-1980s. The over-indebtedness, the enormous fiscal deficits and a growing lag in the competitiveness of the productive sector, among other factors, ended the aforementioned policies. Therefore, an effort to promote the good functioning of markets was, and continues to be, one of the routes that can help these developing economies to ensure a suitable behaviour of economic actors. However, that has not happened in a spontaneous way despite the macroeconomic policies of opening and deregulation. That is why the competition policy becomes indispensable to eliminate distortions in the markets.
This book focuses on the development and the challenges that the competition policy faces in Latin American countries, with a special interest in the small economies of Central America. Most of the latter countries have incorporated competition policies with a considerable lag in their governmental agendas. Thus, the main aim of this book is to analyse the market distortions in that region, the legal and institutional competition instruments governments rely on and those that could be developed to face such distortions.
KeywordsLatin American Country Competition Policy Mobile Telephony Competition Authority Small Economy
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