The Need for Compliance & Ethics in Latin America

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Javier Tapia, Jun 30, 2015

A breath of fresh air is coming to Latin America competition law and policy. Compliance seems to be booming—at last! In 2015 alone there have been at least three international conferences, held in different countries, with long sections dedicated to the subject. There is also an international academia providing courses once a year in an important Latin American city (Sao Paulo, Brazil). These are the most recent steps in the path of increasing knowledge and importance of compliance and ethics programs in the field. Authorities, academics, practitioners, and firms—of any size—now talk about antitrust compliance. Only five years or so ago, this would have been something unexpected.

Most importantly, the talk has turned into action. At governmental level, several agencies are adopting real methods of recognizing compliance. Some of them have issued—or are about to launch—guidelines on the topic. For instance, the Chilean competition agency issued a document entitled Competition Compliance Programs: Complying with Competition Law , which definitive version was launched on June 11, 2012. Likewise, the Colombian authority  is undertaking interesting projects in the area, with the aim of issuing an official document. In other countries, guidelines used in other areas may have a significant impact on competition. This is the case of the Brazilian Decree No. 8,420/2015, issued w…

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