CADE releases OECD peer review report with analysis of the Brazilian competition policy
Last Monday, the Administrative Council for Economic Defense (CADE, in its acronym in Portuguese) gathered authorities of the Brazilian Federal Government and representatives of the antitrust community to the official release of the report: “OECD Peer Reviews of Competition Law and Policy : Brazil” . The document served as basis for the peer review of Brazil carried out by the Organization of Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) Competition Committee as part of the process to become an Associate member.
The report, produced by the organization through the peer review process, shows a broad analysis of the Brazilian Competition Defense System’s (SBDC, in its acronym in Portuguese) and the alignment of the country’s antitrust policies and legislation with the patterns established by OECD.
As a result of the assessment, OECD affirms that CADE “is considered one of the most efficient public agencies in Brazil and its international standing as a leading competition authority both regionally and globally reinforces this domestic view that it is a model public agency”.
The report also highlights the modernisation of the cartel prosecution system conducted by the autarchy, which, according to the publication, was improved with the expansion of the Leniency Program, the investment in inter-institutional cooperation and with the development of intelligence tools and investigative techniques.
“Brazil’s competition regime has gone from strength to strength. The new competition law in 2012 successfully modernised antitrust enforcement and reformed several important areas previously identified by practitioners, academics and international organizations – including in the 2010 OECD peer review – for improvement. These changes have rationalised the institutional framework, modernised the enforcement system and established a pre-merger notification system, in line with the majority of other jurisdictions,” OECD pointed out.
In his speech, the president of CADE, Alexandre Barreto, highlighted that the approval of Brazil as an associate member of OECD’s Competition Committee is a recognition of the remarkable progress accomplished in the country during the last years. “Furthermore, it is a quality seal that signals to the international community and foreign investors that the domestic antitrust policy is in the right path. It is also an assurance of the continuity of the competition policies in Brazil”, he said.
The minister of Justice and Public Security, Sérgio Moro, and the Chairman of OECD’s Competition Committee, Fréderic Jenny, also participated in the solemnity, joined by other authorities.
During his presentation, Sérgio Moro highlighted the importance of the peer review to the continuous enhancement of the country’s competition system. “It’s a process of self-awareness and improvement. Today, an important step was concluded, which is the recognition that Brazil adopts rules and good compliance practices which enables the country to become an associate member of the Competition Committee”, he observed.
To Fréderic Jenny, the peer review outcome was very positive to the committee, since the country has always contributed to the group’s agenda. “Brazil has been so important in our discussions for so long that some people didn’t have a clear notion that it was not yet an associate”, he affirmed.
The dialogues about Brazil’s accession to the Competition Committee had started in December 2017. In coordination with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, CADE formalized the request to become an Associate member during the Global Competition Forum, promoted by the organization in that year, in Paris, France.
In March 2018, Cade received a positive indication regarding its request and was informed that it would have to go through a peer review process. The result was presented by CADE’s delegation November last year, during the 130th Meeting of the OECD Competition Committee, in Paris.
On Monday (03/25), the Brazilian government sent a letter to the president of OECD, making official that the country accepted to join the Competition Committee as an associate member. This is the last step in the accession process.
OECD is structured in many directories, subdivided into committees that meet periodically in order to discuss different topics, such as macroeconomics, trade, development, education, science and innovation. Created over fifty years ago, the Competition Committee has two working groups that deal with the interface between competition, regulation, cooperation and the implementation of antitrust laws.
Brazil, through CADE, has always acted on the OECD forums as an “observer”, regularly presenting written contributions to support the discussions. The Brazilian Competition Law was largely inspired by the recommendations, studies and reviews of the organization, which resulted in several benefits for the SBDC.
“For over two decades, CADE has been contributing with the discussions promoted by the Competition Committee and, now, it will participate more actively on the committee’s work. We’ll seek to strengthen the cooperation with other authorities of the organization and collaborate with the consolidation of best practices regarding the antitrust policies. As the authority responsible for the competition defense in Brazil, CADE will continue its commitment to contribute to the mission of encouraging the economic development and investments in the country”, concluded CADE’s president.