|WASHINGTON — The heads of the antitrust agencies of the United States, Canada and Mexico met today in Mexico City to discuss their ongoing work to ensure effective antitrust enforcement cooperation in our increasingly interconnected markets.The meetings were held among Assistant Attorney General Bill Baer of the Department of Justice’s Antitrust Division, Chairwoman Edith Ramirez of the Federal Trade Commission, Canadian Commissioner of Competition John Pecman and President Alejandra Palacios Prieto of the Mexican Federal Economic Competition Commission.The discussions covered a wide range of topics, including implementation of Mexico’s new competition law, enforcement cooperation among the three countries’ antitrust agencies, approaches to innovative and disruptive technologies and current enforcement priorities.
“We value our close relationships with our antitrust partners north and south of the border,” said Assistant Attorney General Baer. “Our shared enforcement interests and tradition of cooperating when investigating mergers and cartels ensure that North American markets remain competitive. These annual ‘trilateral’ meetings give us a chance to review and improve our enforcement cooperation and to engage in policy dialogue on emerging topics of common interest.”
“These meetings are an important element in building and maintaining the strong relationships that help us meet enforcement and policy challenges in all three countries,” said Chairwoman Ramirez. “The need to cooperate across our borders increases every year, and we are working together to meet that challenge.”
The four agency heads also spoke at a public conference organized by the Mexican agency, which included remarks by Assistant Attorney General Baer on the importance of anti-cartel enforcement and the role of criminal sanctions in the United States.
The meetings build on the foundations laid by the 1995 antitrust cooperation agreement between the United States and Canada, the 2000 agreement between the United States and Mexico and the 2001 agreement between Canada and Mexico. The agreements commit the antitrust agencies to cooperate and coordinate with each other to make their antitrust policies and enforcement as consistent and effective as possible.