ab-2010-55-4-02-kroes, Competition policy and the crisis—the Commission’s approach to banking and beyond

By Neelie Kroes

The last one and a half years of my term in office as EU Competition
Commissioner has been extremely challenging due to the unprecedented
financial crisis which exploded after the collapse of Lehman
Brothers in September 2008.

While the crisis has been an extended one and recovery from it
uneven, one of the few positive things we can take away from the
experience is the general maintenance of competitive markets.
Unlike during the Great Depression, and in defiance of many
vocal opponents, levels of competition in Europe remain largely unaltered
by what are, by comparison, massive crisis policy measures.
This is not to say that there are not threats to competition, nor is it to
pretend that financial sector aid especially has had no impact on the
affected markets. However, there is strong support for the view that
the competition policy architecture needs to be maintained. Supporters
of the view that competition breeds competitiveness, and that. . .

EU competion policy, EU Competion Commision

Neelie Kroes: Vice President, European Commission and European Commissioner
for Digital Agenda; European Commissioner for Competition, 2005–2010.
This article was finalized at the beginning of February 2010, when Ms. Kroes
was still Commissioner for Competition.