BRICS Competition Policy in a Globalising Economy

  • Eleonora Poli
Part of the International Political Economy Series book series (IPES)


BRICS emerged in the international panorama quite recently, compared to dominant economic powers such as the US, Europe and Japan. The term ‘BRICS’ was created by James O’Neil, who in 2001 defined Brazil, Russia, India and China as the new vectors of the world’s economic growth. South Africa was added to the grouping only later. In fact, according to O’Neil, South Africa has a ‘too small economy’ and its ‘inclusion has somewhat weakened the group’s power’ (Smith, 2013). Although O’Neil was right in pointing out ‘that there are not many similarities with the other four countries in terms of the numbers’, the development of antitrust policies by South Africa has shown certain commonalities with the other BRICS (Smith, 2013). In fact, their path towards becoming emerging economies has been characterised by the adoption of competition policies emulating ‘Western’ ideas. Such emulation was inspired by American antitrust cognitive ideas, which were integrated with local understanding of efficiency and welfare, because of specific needs to foster economic growth. In this respect, the institutionalisation of antitrust is here interpreted as a key factor in the evolution of BRICS economies, and not as a consequence. Moreover, the institutional pathways, embraced by the BRICS on their way to developing into emerging markets, have been quite various, and to date, while integrating antitrust institutions inspired by Western models and Chicago ideas, they have developed very different economic systems.


Price Discrimination Competition Policy Competition Regulation Merger Control Socialist Market Economy 
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Copyright information

© Eleonora Poli 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  • Eleonora Poli
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.Istituto Affari Internazionali (IAI)Italy
  2. 2.City Political Economy Research Centre (CITYPERC)City University LondonUK

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