History of competition law

The history of competition law refers to attempts by governments to regulate competitive markets for goods and services, leading up to the modern competition or antitrust laws around the world today. The earliest records traces back to the efforts of Roman legislators to control price fluctuations and unfair trade practices. Throughout the Middle Ages in Europe, kings and queens repeatedly cracked down on monopolies, including those created through state legislation. The English common law doctrine of restraint of trade became the precursor to modern competition law. This grew out of the codifications of United States antitrust statutes, which in turn had considerable influence on the development of European Community competition laws after the Second World War. Increasingly, the focus has moved to international competition enforcement in a globalised economy.


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