In addition to national coordinators, the main partners of the COMPAL Programme comprise of donors (SECO & COMCO) as well as government and regional institutions. SECO's knowledge of the country local situation through the local office (COSUDE) and its experience in implementing technical cooperation programmes has represented a key support to the Programme.
The Swiss Competition Agency (COMCO) is an important partner to the Programme. Besides advice to the Programme particularly in annual monitoring meetings, COMCO has organized internships that focus on training staff from competition agencies from beneficiary countries in the area of competition. In turn, COMCO staff have been able to benefit from their specialization. This has been reflected in the external evaluation of the Programme and at country level. It is worth mentioning that some ex-COMCO interns have been able to support COMPAL activities at local level. It is always encouraging to see how the staff trained perform successfully in this and other areas and contribute to enhance local institutions. Hence, the important contribution from COMCO should be continued.
Additional support from the part of the academia is welcomed. In this regard, experience from COMPAL I with national universities in Nicaragua and Costa Rica continued and support from Latin American Universities, Zurich University of Applied Sciences (Switzerland) and other worldwide academic centres is also expected.
As regards non-funded participants, several countries with advanced competition regimes and more advanced economically have expressed interest in participating in COMPAL as donors and/or beneficiaries. For instance, at the IGE 2008, the Brazilian delegation expressed interest in supporting COMPAL. It is expected that other Latin American countries will take similar initiatives.
This collaboration would be included as part of the COMPAL Advisory Group of Experts (AGE) and would involve providing support in specialized competition issues to the competition authorities from beneficiary countries. It is expected that in the future, this and other initiatives would be incorporated in the so-called COMPAL Platform, including a few selected countries from other regions.
Cooperation with regional and international institutions.
In view of the fact that beneficiary countries are members of regional schemes, UNCTAD is exploring cooperation with regional institutions in order to promote possible areas of cooperation and synergies. These institutions include, ALADI, Andean Community, SIECA, among others.
Finally, as a result of UNCTAD dissemination of the COMPAL Programme in Ghana (April, 2008), several countries from Africa, Asia and Middle East expressed their interest in participating in COMPAL either as beneficiary or at their own costs. Dissemination activities also took place at the Latin American Forum, the Iberoamerican Forum, the Central American Competition Fora, and at the IGE 2008. This has highly contributed to making COMPAL known and visible at regional and international level. The COMPAL Platform could serve to facilitate the dissemination of COMPAL’s outputs and explore further avenues for collaboration with other partners.