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Overview of Competition Law And IPR

India and the world was going through a new phase of globalisation, liberalisation and privatisation and these changing times were bringing newer challenges and the existing MRTP Act had become obsolete in the modern era. Hence the new Competition Act came into being in order to suit the need of the hour. The new act is based on the regulation of conduct or behaviour of the players in the market and is result oriented rather than being procedure oriented like the MRTP Act. Further its main purpose is to protect and promote competition in the market.
Competition is very essential as it benefits: the Consumers as they get wider choice of goods and services, better quality and improved value for money; it benefits the Businesses as a level playing field is created and a redressed of anti-competitive practices is available, the inputs are competitive priced, they tend to have greater productivity and ability to compete in global markets and finally it also benefits the state as there is optimal realisation from sale of assets and there is enhanced availability of resources for social sector.

Protection of IPR
By protecting competition in the market the competition law helps benefit all the players in the market which in turn is beneficial for the economy as a whole. The theory of Intellectual Property Right and Competition Law comes down to the fact that IPR is a right whereas Competition Law is legislation which acts as an artificial hand over the market operation. IPR is something which the State grants the inventor or it is a reward which the State provides to the creator of any product to exploit commercially his creation for a limited period of time. It seems that these two laws are of conflicting in nature but they are not as we find from the above study that these two laws complement each other by backing up when one is abused.

Competition Law attempts to provide a wider choice to the consumers and it seeks to balance the right of manufacturers and the consumers by providing profits and quality product and at a reasonable price, respectively. IPR also seeks to provide the manufacturer his reward in being the sole creator of the product, which should also be for the public benefit. The dominant position offered by IPR is per se not violating the Competition policies but abuse of that position is. In a nutshell, it can be concluded that both these laws have the common objective but there ways to achieve it are different.
The protection given for intellectual property law protects exclusive rights given as patents of the inventions, models, industrial designs, copyrights and others. These rights are given in order to be used as incentives for investment and innovation, and also as identifiers of the good reputation and quality of the product or of the enterprise that is the supplier. In this way, consumers want to obtain products and services, protected by intellectual property rights, with good prices and distinguishable from similar products in the market.
On the other hand, the main function of competition is to promote economic efficiency; preserving the competitive framework as the most appropriate means to ensure the efficient allocation of economic resources. The interplay between intellectual property rights and competition law is very important for the maintenance of a competitive and dynamic economic climate. In fact, the system of intellectual property protection is needed, with the risks that this often entails, as a precondition for innovation. The technical progress that this promotes in turn creates an increase in competition at the level of research and development. Competitors will therefore be encouraged to participate in innovation.
Intellectual property and the protection of competition are to be regarded as equal and necessary elements of a dynamic legal and economic system, but this does not imply that all such interactions are without dispute. It is important to understand that there is no uniform approach to the relationship between competition law and intellectual property law. However there are strong differences in doctrine regarding the general criteria for resolving conflicts between these two areas. This causes a lack of clear rules to follow for companies interested in technology transfers and in the signing licensing agreements.
Therefore, we believe that while there is an interface between the defence of free competition and intellectual property protection, this does not mean that there is a collision between the two but that there are some areas where disputes can occur. These disputes should be regarded as exceptional situations because in fact, exclusive rights encourage innovation and technology generation to benefit society.
I have identified that the main disputes between intellectual property and competition are regarded to be: the abuse of dominant position by the holder of an intellectual property right; compulsory licenses when an abuse of a dominant position previously was determinate; and for public necessity, urgency or national emergency.

I believe, that is very important to study both IPR and Competition law to understand the dynamic in each country and how to face the disputes that can appear in their interplay. To achieve this goal is very important to know the experiences of academics and authorities of different countries.

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