2020 ICN Merger Workshop

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission is pleased to be hosting the 2020 ICN Merger Workshop, which will be held on Thursday 27 February and Friday 28 February at the Sofitel Melbourne on Collins in Melbourne, Australia.

The Workshop will build around the foundation question ‘How can authorities achieve the right balance in their approach to merger review in a changing market environment?’ through a range of topical plenary and small group sessions designed to cater to a broad range of interests among ICN Merger Working Group members and non-governmental advisors (NGAs).

ICN Merger Working Group member authorities and NGAs nominated by their member authority are invited to participate in the Workshop.

Registration for the Workshop is now open. Please register at 2020 ICN Merger Workshop registration, preferably by 1 December 2019 but no later than 24 January 2020.

For further information, please visit the ICN Merger Workshop 2020 website.


2019 ICN Cartel Workshop

2019 ICN Cartel Workshop

The Administrative Council for Economic Defense of Brazil will host the 2019 ICN Cartel Workshop, in Foz do Iguaçu, Brazil, from 7 to 10 October 2019. The venue of the workshop will be the Wish Resort Golf Convention.

The theme of the workshop is “Cartels in the Age of Data-Driven Economy” and it will focus on the paradoxical impact of data on cartels since it can be used to facilitate collusion and also help agencies to detect cartels. Some of the topics that will be discussed at the event are: delineation of cartel activities in a changing business environment; challenges and information management for data-driven markets; antitrust liability for software-based infringements; intelligence and screening tools; effective leniency and evidence assessment in the digital era; due process and cooperation tools.

The 2019 ICN Cartel Workshop is an invitation-only event. The admission will be reserved for ICN Competition Authorities members and NGAs.

For more information, please access https://icncartelworkshop2019.cade.gov.br/.


ICN Framework for Competition Agency Procedures Update

Participants of the ICN Framework for Competition Agency Procedures hold inaugural meeting

On 5 June 2019, the International Competition Network (ICN) held the inaugural meeting of the participants of the ICN Framework for Competition Agency Procedures (CAP) in Paris. The first-term CAP Co-chairs were confirmed as: (i) the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission, (ii) the German Bundeskartellamt, and (iii) the United States Department of Justice, Antitrust Division.

The CAP is an opt-in implementation framework open to all ICN members and other competition authorities. The CAP contains fundamental procedural fairness principles that reflect the broad consensus within the global competition community across different legal and institutional frameworks. Participants are willing to adhere to these principles and cooperate in the implementation of the CAP.

The CAP introduces two procedures: 1) the CAP Cooperation Process, which facilitates agency-to-agency dialogue and 2) the CAP Review Process, which promotes transparency between participants by allowing them to share and explain important features of their systems.

Additional information related to the CAP can be found here.

A list of CAP participants is linked here.


2019 Annual Conference Press Release

ICN’s 18th Annual Conference concluded today in Cartagena, Colombia.

See the ICN’s Press Release linked and in text below.

2019 ICN Annual Conference Press Release

NEWS RELEASE, 17 MAY 2019

CARTAGENA, COLOMBIA

Today, the International Competition Network (ICN) concluded its 18th annual conference with approval of new work on procedural fairness, vertical mergers, enforcement cooperation, agency organizational design, leniency, private enforcement, and vertical restraints. The conference took place 15-17 May in Cartagena, Colombia, hosted by Colombia’s Superintendencia de Industria y Comercio (SIC). Approximately 500 ICN member agency representatives, private sector non-governmental advisers, academics, and representative of other international organizations from over 80 jurisdictions attended the conference.

In his opening speech Andreas Mundt stated “There is no official overarching theme for the conference, but the clear focus is on two topics, first, on the digital economy, and second, on investigative process. The ICN CAP is a huge step forward in this regard.”

The plenary sessions inter alia dealt with the question of how agencies can uncover and punish cartels in the digital era, the assessment of dominance in digital and high tech sectors and agency restructuring to meet the challenges of digitalisation. A session limited to agency heads also focussed on digital issues.

The ICN introduced two new instruments on procedural fairness in competition law investigations and enforcement proceedings. The ICN Framework for Competition Agency Procedures (CAP) went into effect with over 60 agency participants. The CAP is an opt-in implementation framework with fundamental procedural fairness principles backed by cooperation and review provisions. The CAP principles are fully consistent with the extensive work of the ICN in this field, reflecting the broad consensus within the global competition community. The CAP allows for agency-to-agency dialogues to increase understanding of differences in agency procedures. It also promotes transparency about agency procedural rules through templates that explain how each participant’s procedures match CAP principles. The CAP is ICN’s third opt-in framework joining enforcement cooperation frameworks on mergers and cartels. The deadline for founding members is Wednesday, 22 May.

The ICN approved new Recommended Practices for Investigative Process (RPs) that address key procedural fairness themes of appropriate use of investigative tools, transparency, engagement with subjects or parties, agency decision making safeguards, and confidentiality. The ICN RPs are its highest-level consensus statements on procedural fairness practices approved by its membership.

The detailed recommendations for agency practices in the RPs, and the basic principles and implementation framework in the CAP provide a comprehensive package of procedural fairness guidance for competition agencies. The ICN’s consensus work on procedural fairness puts its member agencies voices at the forefront of international norm-setting on this important topic.

The ICN membership approved new work at the conference addressing several areas of competition law and policy. On cartels, the ICN approved new, detailed Good Practices for incentivising leniency, providing practical advice to agency on useful practices that have worked well around the world. The ICN’s cartel working group also produced a new report on the interaction of private and public enforcement. The ICN’s merger working group produced new practical tools for enforcement cooperation, including considerations for the types of information that can be shared, and an innovative comparative report on approaches to vertical merger analysis. On the topic of unilateral conduct, the ICN introduced its most comprehensive work on vertical restraints, a new comparative evaluation of approaches to common hypothetical cases studies. The conference also included the announcement of the winners of the 2018-2019 ICN-World Bank Competition Advocacy Contest. For more information on the contest, see https://www.worldbank.org/en/events/2018/12/06/2018-2019-competition-advocacy-contest#4.

The ICN also announced that its 2020 annual conference will take place in the United States, hosted by the U.S. Federal Trade Commission and the U.S. Department of Justice, Antitrust Division.

The ICN, founded in 2001, is the most inclusive and productive competition agency-led collaboration, with 139 member agencies from 126 jurisdictions. The ICN’s mission is to promote convergence of practices and cooperation among agencies.

All of the ICN’s work produce is available on its website at: https://www.internationalcompetitionnetwork.org/


Framework for Competition Agency Procedures

On April 3, 2019, the International Competition Network’s Steering Group members
approved the international Framework on Competition Agency Procedures (CAP).
The CAP is an “opt-in” framework, open to all competition agencies, aimed as an
implementation tool to advance basic fairness principles among all competition
authorities. While the CAP is inspired by ICN members and is supported by its
resources, its implementation structure allows for additional cooperation among
participants and is open to competition agencies that are not ICN members as well.

Press Release on the CAPMore information on the CAP

2019 ICN Annual Conference

2019 ICN Annual Conference

The Colombian Superintendence of Industry and Commerce will host the 2019 International Competition Network (ICN) Annual Conference, in Cartagena, Colombia, from 15 to 17 May 2019. The venue for the conference will be Hotel Las Americas, Cartagena. The 2019 Annual Conference will be the 18th annual conference hosted under ICN auspices. During the conference, discussions will focus on strategies related to digital economy, innovation, market definitions and the role of the competition policy since the different perspectives of the ICN.

The ICN Annual Conference is an invitation only event. The admission will be reserved for ICN Competition Authorities members and NGAs. The Colombian Superintendence of Industry and Commerce looks forward to welcoming ICN member agencies and NGAs from across the globe to Cartagena in May 2019.

For more information see: http://serviciosweb.sic.gov.co/icn-annual-conference-2019/


2019 ICN Advocacy Workshop

The 2019 ICN Advocacy Workshop was hosted in Kyiv. Under the theme of “Competition Advocacy: from Barriers to Prosperity,” the two-day event gathered more than 100 competition officials, advocacy professionals, lawyers, economists and academics from about 60 enforcement agencies and organizations. It was co-organized by the Anti-monopoly Committee of Ukraine (AMCU) and the Advocacy Working Group (AWG) co-chairs, i.e. Norwegian Competition Authority (NCA), Hong Kong Competition Commission (HKCC) and Competition and Consumer Commission of Singapore (CCCS). AMCU Chairman Yuriy Terentiev and HKCC Senior Executive Director Rasul Butt delivered the opening remarks to welcome participants. Representing the co-chairs, Butt gave a brief overview of the work that has been done by the Working Group in 2018-19, including three main work-streams on (1) Advocacy Strategy, (2) Advocacy and Digital Markets and (3) Impact Assessment. With continued, firm support from member agencies and NGAs on those projects, the Working Group has been able to carry out its mission to improve the effectiveness of ICN members in advocating competition principles and to promote the development of a competition culture.

The Workshop began with five competition and advocacy experts sharing their insights on formulating a successful and effective advocacy strategy in the first plenary. It was followed by the second session “Bridging Competition Advocacy and Enforcement” in which speakers talked about how to foster competition culture through advocacy to enhance enforcement impact with cases from their jurisdictions. On the second day, the Workshop continued with the discussion on competition assessment in the policy development process. To conclude the Workshop, recognized experts from the ICN, OECD, the World Bank Group and UNCTAD came together to discuss practical ways for the competition agencies to assist and cooperate with each other in the last plenary “Advocating International Best Practices”.

The Workshop also consisted of nine break-out sessions, enabling lively discussions following up on various aspects of the matters that were more broadly debated in the plenaries, such as advocacy in the digital era, traditional and social media as well as inter-agency collaboration. In addition, these more focused discussions also covered topics that are highly relevant to the current advocacy challenges facing the competition authorities in Ukraine and the region, including issues in relation to natural monopoly, adjacent market, state-owned enterprises and privatization process.


2018 ICN Merger Workshop

The Japan Fair Trade Commission is honoured to host the 2018 International Competition Network (ICN) Merger Workshop!

This two-day workshop will be held on 7th and 8th November in the city of Tokyo, where traditionalism and modernism co-exist. Participants will be able to enjoy significant benefits from sharing their knowledge and experiences with each other and enriching the discussion on cutting-edge issues in merger regulation in the rapidly changing economy. Japan Fair Trade Commission looks forward to welcoming ICN member agencies and NGAs to participate in this beneficial and valuable event.

Contact: icnmergerworkshop2018@jftc.go.jp

Website : https://icnmergerworkshop2018.jftc.go.jp/