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Australian Competition Law: Expert Profiles

Robert (Bob) Baxt AO (dec.)

Former Chairman, Trade Practices Commission (1988-1991)
27 June 1938 - 11 March 2018


Relevant qualifications and honours

Qualifications and honourary degrees

Bachelor of Arts (BA) 1959 University of Sydney

Bachelor of Laws (LLB) 1963 University of Sydney

Honorary Doctorate, 1996 Griffith University

Honorary Doctorate, 2018 Monash University


2003 - Officer, Order of Australia
('For service to the law, particularly as a leading spokesperson in the areas of trade practice, competition, taxation and corporate law, and in the field of legal education')

2001 - Recipient, Centenary Medal
('For service to consumer protection as chairman of the Trade Practices Commission')


Relevant work history and committee involvement

Image of briefcaseHerbert Smith Freehills
Partner and consultant (Melbourne) (2005-2017)

Allens Arthur Robinson
Partner (1991-2004)

Trade Practices Commission (now ACCC)
Chiarman (1988-1991)
[see also Stephen Corones, David Merrett and David Round, 'Building an Effective Trade Practices Commission: The Role of Professor Robert Baxt AO' (2009) 49(2) Australian Economic History Review 138-172]

Faculty of Law, Monash University
Dean of Law (1980-1988)

Melbourne Law School, University of Melbourne
Professorial Fellow, University of Melbourne and Chair of the Advisory Board for the competition and consumer law specialisation in the Melbourne Law Masters program.

Law Council of Australia
Founding member of the Business Law Section of the Law Council of Australia and long time member of the the competition and consumer committee (among others).

Australian Institute of Company Directors
Chairman of the Law Committee



Australian Business Law Review
Founder and General Editor

Company and Securities Law Journal
Founder and General Editor

The Baxt Report



In recognition of the substantial contribution made by Professor Baxt to the development of competition law in Australia, the University of Melbourne created an Annual Lecture Series in his name:

Annual Baxt Lecture in Competition Law
Inaugural Baxt Lecture delivered by Prof William Kovacic in 2010

Baxt Prize
In 2017 the Business Law Section of the Law Council Australia offered, for the first time, the Baxt Prize for an outstanding research paper on the topic of 'Human Rights and Business Law'.


Competition law publications

Image of bookBob Baxt, Bob's Best: A Collection of Essays by Bob Baxt (Wolters Kluwer, November 2015)

Robert Baxt AO, 'The Harper "Root and Branch" Review: A Possible New Way Forward for the Clearance of Anti-Competitive Mergers?' (2014) 88 Australian Law Journal 468

Robert Baxt AO, 'What can we expect from the Root and Branch Review of Competition Law and Policy?' (2014) 88 Australian Law Journal 100

Robert Baxt AO, 'The Root and Branch Review of Competition Law and Policy' (2014) 42 ABLR 46

Robert Baxt, 'Will there be a change in the review of mergers by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission after the Metcash Decision' (2012) 40 Australian Business Law Review 55

Bob Baxt AO, Nathan Kiratzis and Matthew Eglezoz, 'Price signalling legislation - the government releases its proposal' (2011) Issue 628, Australian Trade Practices News, 13 January 2011, page 6

... and many more


Submissions to inquiries (select)

Competition Policy Review (Harper Review), Submission on Issues Paper (2014)
Argued new approach needed for problems concerning small business community - not appropriate to make further reforms to the CCA for this purpose (better to address them through separate legislative regime). Also notes opposition to introduction of statutory unconscionable conduct provisions because they focus on protection of individual competitors rather than promotion of competition.

Senate Economics Committee, Trade Practices Amendment (Infrastructure Access) Bill 2009, Submission No 1
Bill to amends the National Access Regime in relation to: binding time limits and limited merits review; applications by certain persons that a certain service is ineligible to be a declared service; enabling the ACCC to accept access undertakings with fixed principles that will apply to subsequent undertakings; enabling the ACCC to issue an amendment notice proposing amendments to a proposed access undertaking submitted by a service provider; administrative processes of the NCC and the ACT; and consequential amendments. Bill passed with amendments in 2010

Inquiry by Senate Economics Committee into the Trade Practices Amendment (Cartel Conduct and Other Measures) Bill 2008
Reported 2009 - Bill passed with minor amendments in 2009.


More information


News and media releases