Following the introduction of criminal sanction, including jail terms, for hard core cartelisation in the United Kingdom, the Dawson Review has recently recommended that criminal penalties be introduced in Australia for individuals and corporations found to have engaged in hard core cartels. A number of reasons have been advanced to justify the introduction of criminal sanctions for this type of conduct, the most common of which are that it would bring Australia in line with other competition regimes and that criminal sanctions are more likely to provide an effective deterrent. This article evaluates those reasons, and others, to determine whether there is any adequate justification for the proposed criminal regime.
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