The Interaction between Environmental Sustainability and Competition Law



Ruben Lapa Maximiano is a Senior Competition Expert at the OECD in Paris and a lecturer at Lille Catholic University, where he teaches EU Merger Control. Amongst other responsibilities at the OECD he is responsible for the work on competition policy in Asia Pacific region.

Before joining the OECD, Mr. Maximiano worked at the European Commission for nearly 5 years, having worked mostly on merger control in a number of sectors and been a part of the Financial Crisis Task Force where he worked also on state aid in the banking. Prior to that he worked at the Portuguese Competition Authority where he was Senior Legal Case Handler and as a Lawyer in Vieira de Almeida & Associados in Lisbon, Portugal in the Competition Law and Telecoms regulation field. He is admitted to the Portuguese Bar. Mr. Maximiano received an LL.M. in European Law from the College of Europe, Belgium.


This presentation delves into the intricate relationship between competition law and environmental sustainability, exploring the potential for competition policy to serve as a tool in achieving sustainability objectives. With a particular emphasis on the role of competition authorities, we will examine whether and how these authorities should factor sustainability into their decision-making processes.

Competition law traditionally focuses on promoting fair competition and preventing anti-competitive practices that may harm consumers or restrict market entry. However, as the urgency of addressing environmental challenges such as climate change, pollution, and resource depletion grows, there is an increasing recognition that competition policy can play a significant role in advancing sustainability goals.

Competition authorities possess the expertise and enforcement powers to monitor and regulate markets effectively. By considering sustainability factors in their assessments, these authorities have the potential to shape market dynamics in ways that promote environmentally friendly practices and technologies.

Additionally, this presentation will examine the potential tensions and challenges that arise when competition law and sustainability objectives intersect....

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