Recent Trends in Leniency Agreements in Brazil

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Marcos Exposto, Luiz Galvao, Barbara Rosenberg, Sandra Terepins, Feb 26, 2014

For the past two decades, leniency programs have been growingly adopted by antitrust authorities around the globe as one of the main tools in cartel prosecution. As seen in other jurisdictions, the Brazilian authorities have been striving to build a well-respected leniency program. The last couple of years suggest that the Brazilian competition authority-the Administrative Council for Economic Defense (“CADE”)-in order to grant the benefits of the leniency program has been gradually more demanding regarding the need to collect strong evidence of the existence of a collusion, as well as proof of (potential) effects in the country.

Based on recent experience, the standard of what is considered acceptable to secure an agreement seems to be higher than it was in the past, when leniency agreements were accepted in any global cartel case under the presumption that it could have generated effects in Brazil. This new trend- only accepting leniency applications for cartels that are effectively proven to have effects in the Brazilian market-is clearly welcome from a policy standpoint.

 

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