Dimension V: General Legal Principles Governing the Allocation of Competences in RTAs and the Notion of Time
Regional integration is often automatically associated with the concept of supranationality. However, while supranationality might have constituted a key driver in the European competition and general economic system, it is not an indispensable condition for a regional competition law regime’s success. Moreover, the concept of supranationality can materialize in different forms, reflecting different degrees of integration and centralization. As the interplay of regional bodies, substantive law and enforcement competences has shown, inter-governmentalism and supranationality do not appear as alternative forms of regional integration, but cumulative factors that shape the overall design of an agreement. Yet, the existence of both factors also bears potential for conflicts and calls for a balancing act. A regional competition law system in particular has to provide for mechanisms and principles that resolve conflicts that might arise from an ambiguous allocation of competences.