Volume 27 (2004)

Volume 27 (2004) / Issue 3

Mark Williams, 'Competition Law in Thailand: Seeds of Success or Fated to Fail?' (2004) 27 World Competition, Issue 3, pp. 459–494


<p>Thailand’s competition regime was substantially overhauled in 1999 in the aftermath of the Asian Financial Crisis as part of a wide-ranging reform of economic regulation. The new law was recognisably pro-competition and had ambitions to enhance the competitive capacity of Thai industry so as to be better able to withstand the increased competitive pressures from international business that was obtaining greater access to the Thai economy as international trade regimes liberalised. This article seeks to place Thailand’s new competition regime within the context of international competition law developments, especially in relation to developing and transitional economies, analyse the structure and content of the new law and the institutions established to enforce the statute. The article then attempts to assess the success of the first five years of implementation of the new regime. The observed weak enforcement of the new law is explained in terms of the incapacity of the state to implement the law effectively that is compounded by the absence of political commitment by the current government to a pro-competition economic policy. This lack of political will is due to leading government ministers having chronic conflicts of interest, immature and fragile institutional structures and, at root, the absence of a ``functioning’’ democracy.</p>

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ISSN: 1011-4548
ID: WOCO2004025