The Global Competition Law Centre (GCLC) held its 18th Annual Conference at the Residence Palace in Brussels on 20–21 April 2023.
The conference focused on ‘The Future of Energy Markets: Which Role for Competition Policy in the Current Geopolitical Context?’, bringing together experts from industry, government, and academia to discuss the challenges and opportunities facing energy markets in the years ahead.
Professors Adina Claici, GCLC Director, and Massimo Merola, former President of the GCLC and current member of the GCLC Executive Committee, co-organised the conference with the help of Carlos Martinez Garcia, GCLC Executive Secretary.
Rector Federica Mogherini welcomed attendees and panellists on the College’s behalf, and the European Commission’s Executive Vice-President Margrethe Vestager delivered the keynote speech, during which she emphasised the need for competition policy to promote innovation and investment in the energy sector while also addressing environmental and social concerns.
Professor Merola then presented the conference. He highlighted the need to determine the most appropriate trade-off between security of supply and green objectives and explained the role that competition policy must play in that regard.
Professor Claici chaired the introductory panel, which set the scene for the entire conference by discussing the role of competition policy in the current geopolitical situation and in light of the recent market reforms launched by the European Commission.
Professors Govaere, Dumont and Meyring also importantly contributed to ensuring the conference was a resounding success.
Attendees explored a range of topics related to energy markets and competition policy, including the role of regulation in promoting competition, the affordability of energy prices for households and enterprises, the roll-out of EU energy infrastructure, and the legal toolbox currently available to face the EU energy dilemma.
During the first day of the conference, Ciara Deniha, a law student from the Éliane Vogel-Polskly Promotion, received the GCLC’s annual prize for the best dissertation in competition law and policy written at the College of Europe.
For those who were unable to attend, the conference slides are available here (https://www.coleurope.eu/18th-gclc-annual-conference-future-energy-markets-20-21-april-2023).