Autorità Garante della Concorrenza e del Mercato

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The Italian Competition Authority (Autorità Garante della Concorrenza e del Mercato) was established in Italy by Law no. 287 of 1990.  It is an independent body, in that decisions are based on the competition law without interference by the Government. Having as aim the citizens’ welfare, the Authority enforces rules against anticompetitive agreements among undertakings, abuses of dominant position as well as concentrations (e.g., mergers and acquisitions, joint ventures) which may create or strengthen dominant positions detrimental to competition. Moreover, the Authority may send official opinions to the Government, the Parliament, the Regions and Local Authorities whenever existing or proposed legislative and administrative measures restrict competition. The Italian Competition Authority is also in charge of several other competencies, including protecting consumers from misleading advertising, comparative advertising which may bring discredit on competitors’ products or cause confusion, as well as unfair commercial practices among undertakings. Finally, the Authority enforces rules against conflicts of interest for government officials.