U.S., Canada Sign Accord Enhancing Antitrust Cooperation

By Agence France-Presse U.S. and Canadian officials signed an accord on Oct. 5 that bolsters the process under which they will refer cases of anti-competitive behavior to each other's authorities for possible prosecution. U.S. Attorney General John Ashcroft and Federal Trade Commission Chairman Deborah Platt Majoras represented the United States, while the Canadian ambassador to the United States, Michael Kergin, represented Canada at the signing ceremony. The accord will enable antitrust officials in one country to request that their counterparts across the border probe and effectively prosecute against anti-competitive conduct that affects the country requesting the action and violates the laws of the country responding to the request. The United States already has a similar agreement with Europe, and U.S. and Canadian officials pledged to devote their best efforts and resources to investigating referred matters. The accord does not apply to merger or cartel investigations, and it stipulates that confidential information may be shared only where the source of the information has consented. Copyright Agence France-Presse, 2004

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