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 Last week we analyzed the view of US antitrust enforcers on the existence of a compliance program when assessing the punishment for cartel violations. How do other countries treat the existence of a compliance program?

In Australia, Canada, the UK, Chile, France, India, Israel, Singapore and the UK, antitrust agencies may treat the existence of a compliance program as a mitigating factor in so far as it evidences a genuine compliance culture. In France, a reduction (typically 5%; exceptionally 10%) is available for settling companies that either did not have a program but commit to setting one up, or which commit to upgrading an existing program according to best practice. In Brazil, the antitrust authority is considering issuing regulations related to compliance programs, which might reward effective programs with a lower fine1 and draft Italian antitrust guidelines were published earlier this year providing that robust and effective compliance programs will be a mitigating factor in calculating the level of an antitrust fine. On October 31, 2014 the Italian Antitrust Authoritypublished its Guidelines on the criteria to be followed in order to quantify the administrative fines in cases of serious violation of national or EU regulations governing anti-competitive agreements and abuse of a dominant position. The Guidelines list the adoption and enforcement of a specific and adequate compliance program in line with the best European and national practices as one of the mitigating circumstance to be taken into account to decrease the starting amount of the fine (up to a maximum of 15%). Click here for more information.


Doug Tween is the Chair of Baker & McKenzie’s White Collar Practice Group and heads the firm’s New York Litigation Department. He is a trial lawyer who represents clients in their most important and sensitive matters, and brings extensive courtroom experience to the defense of companies and individuals in white-collar criminal and regulatory investigations, as well as complex civil litigation and class actions. He has been described in Law360 as “a litigator you fear going up against in court,” and was previously Baker & McKenzie's nominee as "Litigator of the Year" in The American Lawyer's Litigation Department of the Year competition. He has been recognized as a Notable Practitioner by Chambers and Partners and by Super Lawyers as a New York Super Lawyer. Mr. Tween is also Chair of the Cartel and Criminal Practice Committee of the American Bar Association’s Antitrust Section, a Non-Governmental Advisor to the International Competition Network, the Chair of Baker & McKenzie's Global Cartel Task Force, and a member of the Firm's North America Competition Law Steering Committee. From 1990 to 2005, Mr. Tween served as a Trial Attorney with the US Department of Justice Antitrust Division. He was one of the US government’s most highly honored antitrust trial attorneys, having received the Attorney General’s Distinguished Service Award, the Antitrust Division Award of Distinction, and numerous other citations.

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