Alexey Ivanov: “The 6th antimonopoly package will be aimed at internal digital transformation of the antimonopoly authority”

Alexey Ivanov: “The 6th antimonopoly package will be aimed at internal digital transformation of the antimonopoly authority”


The Director of the HSE-Skolkovo Institute for Law and Development made this statement at the session “Digital Economy — New Challenges, New Solutions” of the 9th St. Petersburg International Legal Forum.

The session “Digital economy — new challenges, new solutions” was held on 16 May 2019. During the event, deputy head of the Russian antimonopoly authority Andrei Tsarikovsky, president of the Administrative Council for Economic Defence of Brazil, Alexandre Barreto de Souza, representatives of the antimonopoly authorities of various countries and experts discussed potential solutions to the challenges posed by today’s economy and whether competition law can be one of them. One of the key topics for discussion was the transformation of antimonopoly regulation and the adaptation of its approaches to the new realities.

“In order to regulate the digital economy more effectively, the antimonopoly authority must itself undergo a digital transformation,” says Alexey Ivanov. “That is, agencies should incorporate big data analysis, predictive analytics and other state-of-the-art management tools in their everyday activities. Digital platforms and digital ecosystems that define the image of today’s economy extensively use these methods in their business. In order to effectively regulate them, regulators, too, should apply the most advanced analysis techniques. We see that markets are increasingly managed by digital platforms, which means that antitrust regulation, if we want to preserve it in the new conditions, should resemble State Planning 2.0 rather than a control and oversight authority that we are used to. Stabilization of market distortions in the digital economy is a major analytical and regulatory challenge, which is difficult to respond to using the standard control and oversight methods.”

According to Ivanov, internal digital transformation is the next challenge that the regulator will face after the adoption of the fifth antimonopoly package. “This could be the basis for the 6th antimonopoly package,” the expert noted.

Andrei Tsarikovskiy spoke in a similar vein: “Previously, antimonopoly regulation of the digital sphere implied control over digital giants, but now all markets have become digital. Information technologies is just the tip of the iceberg. New economic phenomena come and go at a faster pace than that of the legislative activity cycle. If we ourselves do not change the principles of regulation, we will not be able to control any of the markets.”

He recalled the “fifth antimonopoly package” which was developed with support from the HSE-Skolkovo Institute for Law and Development of the HSE-Skolkovo and adapts the relevant legislation to the requirements of the digital age. Mr Tsarikovski stressed that “any delay in the adoption of the package entails high costs because the reality is changing quickly, new factors emerge that we must take into account in legislation.”

All the attendees, including international experts, acknowledged that international cooperation plays an important part in the transformation of the world economy. “If you transform together, you can strengthen each other. For example, by combining arrays of market data they analyse, antimonopoly authorities of the BRICS countries can identify economic trends and apply antimonopoly response measures more accurately,” said Alexey Ivanov.

A report is now being prepared on “Antimonopoly Regulation in the Digital Economy in the Interests of the BRICS countries”, which will be presented in September 2019 as part of the 6th International Conference on BRICS Competition.