Discussion Papers

Development of Competition Laws in Korea

By Hwang Lee

ERIA Discussion Paper 2015-78

Posted: November 2015

Abstract

Economic development policies that were export-focused and biased toward unbalanced growth were initially implemented through government-led initiatives in Korea since the 1960s. These resulted in many problems as well as a big success. Korean competition policies were born and developed to take the role of correcting and complementing economic development policies. Today competition policies have become a major force in Korea's economic policy. Many parts of industrial policies were replaced by sectoral competition policy in substance. After the 2008 global financial crisis, Korea is faced with new challenges. Recent economic difficulties seem to ask for a bigger role to protect SMEs and fairness in society to address so-called bipolarisation. The economic policy to improve productivity in the name of so-called 'creative economy', designed to overcome limits of existing growth strategy, requires proper regulations against abuse of IPRs to supplement strengthened protection of intellectual property rights. All in all, Korea's antitrust policy remains generally very active in building sound market competition.

ERIA-DP-2015-78

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