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   As  envisaged  by  the EEC Treaty, competition policy is not  an  end  in
   itself  but  an instrument intended to achieve the  Treaty's  fundamental
   objectives.  It  cannot  be  subordinated  to  all  the  other  Community
   policies,  nor  must  it ignore them.  To avoid  being  marginalized  and
   becoming  an  esoteric legal dogma, it must respond to  the  other  major
   Community policies.

   All  the  Member  States  have  an industrial  policy  and  even  if  the
   instruments  differ,  the  common goal  is  to  improve  competitiveness.
   Whether competition policy and industrial policy clash or complement each
   other depends on the type of industrial policy envisaged.  If it is based
   on protectionism and intended to prop up lame ducks, there is bound to be
   a  clash.  On  the  contrary, if, as is the  case  with  the  Community's
   industrial policy, it is based on open and competitive markets, there  is
   no need for any clash to occur.

   In   the   Commission's  communication  on  industrial   policy   (1990),
   competition  is  viewed  as an essential element  for  implementing  this
   industrial policy, based as it is on an efficient single market,  dynamic
   international  competition,  the  absence  of  interventionist   sectoral
   policies, etc..

   Citing  a number of examples, Mr Van Miert illustrated the impact of  the
   competition policy on:

   - State aid

    In  the steel industry, state aid can serve only to preserve  situations
    inherited  from  the past; without this, the full weight  of  structural
    adjustment  will  fall  on the most efficient companies,  which  do  not
    qualify   for   state  aid.  State  aid  as  an  integral  part   of   a
    forward-looking approach to research and development is consistent  with
    the  objectives  of  industrial policy.  The closer the aid  is  to  the
    market, the more restricted it must be.

   -   Liberalization

    It  is clear that some consumers in important sectors have  been  denied
    the benefits of the internal market.  For example, there are large price
    differences for telecommunications between Member States, and this harms
    the competitiveness of Community industries.  That is why the Commission
    has  recently  made  proposals to liberalize  these  sectors.  The  same
    approach  is  valid  for all regulated sectors, in  which  industry  and
    consumers  in  the Community have a major interest and  Community  firms
    have to be able to hold their own against international competition.  Of
    course,  in  such  cases the rule of reciprocity  must  apply  in  third
    countries.  Is it normal to allow foreign firms which have prospered  in
    a  protected  market to gain access to our internal market and  to  take
    advantage of it at the expense of our own industry?

   -   Mergers

    If mergers are examined in a realistic and dynamic fashion, with account
    being  taken  of commercial realities (in particular from the  angle  of
    market  and product definition) and not in a dogmatic, static or  overly
    legalistic way, then there should be no clash with industrial policy.

   -   Anti-trust

    In  this field, Mr Van Miert said that he attached great  importance  to
    dialogue  with  industry  so  that  competition  policy  could   respond
    consistently  to  commercial  reality.  This  does  not  mean  weakening
    competition policy.  Anti-competitive and market-sharing practices  such
    as cartels will always be severely sanctioned.

    He  insisted that competition policy was inadequate if  competition  was
    not developing on a level playing field.

   In  conclusion,  Mr Van Miert was encouraged by the  fact  that  American
   companies were among the first to view the Community as a single  market.
   However, he insisted that the moves to open up markets should not all  be
   in one direction.

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