Date of Publication


Document Type

Master's Thesis

Degree Name

Juris Doctor

Subject Categories

Antitrust and Trade Regulation


College of Law



Thesis Adviser

Avelino M. Sebastian, Jr.

Defense Panel Chair

Edward P. Chico

Defense Panel Member

Vyva Victoria M. Aguirre
Milagros-Isabel A. Cristobal


Almost twenty years ago, at a time when globalization was just seemingly at its advent, the World Trade Organization (WTO) was instituted to, among others, promote free trade – on the belief that it was a voguish way by which humanity’s general economic and social welfare could be enhanced. However, the potential welfare gains from such a set-up have not accrued, if at all, to their intended beneficiaries: the domestic market, due to the proliferation of anti-competitive arrangements. Tersely therefore, the end-and-be-all of free trade could be achieved not by out-rightly liberalizing trade alone – but it must be coupled with the regulation of anti-competitive practices. But what is the optimal form of competition-regulation in the globalized age? Should it be country-based legislation independent of the rest of the world? Or should it be via a multilateral agreement under the auspices of an international body, say the WTO? Or should countries instead strive to harmonize domestic antitrust legislations without any multilateral agreement? This thesis argues that from the point-of-view of a developing nation, the harmonization of competition laws seems to be the best solution, as it is not as naïve as autarkic domestic legislation – since it fails to consider the fact that most, if not all, economic welfare-reducing-market-restraints are not within the ambit of a single-country’s regulatory prowess in the age of globalization – nor as ambitious as a multilateral agreement – which under the current global political-economic state-of-affairs is far from forthcoming, if at all – and yet it sufficiently addresses the minutiae of the local economy.

Abstract Format




Accession Number



Antitrust law—Philippines; Trade regulation—Philippines; Free trade—Philippines; Antitrust law (International law)

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