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Construction Industry

By OECD

Abstract

The OECD Competition Committee debated issues related to the Construction Industry in June 2008. This roundtable addressed the special characteristics of the construction industry as they relate to competition law and policy. Construction is a critical sector in OECD economies because it builds and maintains the structures and infrastructure on which almost every other industry depends. Unfortunately, the construction industry has also tended to suffer from cartel activity, as shown by a spate of well - publicised recent matters from around the world. The roundtable includes an examination of why this industry seems to be more prone to cartel formation than other industries. It also looked into the complications that may arise when multiple construction firms use the same bid calculation software. Finally, the Committee discussed the arguments – occasionally made by industry advocates – that competition is either irrelevant or “ruinous” in the construction industry. Neither argument was found to be persuasive, as there are no distinguishing features of the construction sector that reduce the benefits that competition brings to consumer welfare.

DOI identifier: 10.1787/clp-10-5kmhbhp87tbv
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