Local Firm Supports Country's Economic GrowthWed, 05/08/2019 - 16:01
Q: What significant changes have impacted the competition and antitrust legal landscape in Mexico?
RV: The Mexican economy has become highly dynamic, which was a key factor in establishing the former Federal Economic Competition Law that was developed in parallel to NAFTA. The market for the provision of competition and antitrust legal services has also grown in Mexico, which has led to greater competition among law firms. Valdes Abascal has participated in some the most emblematic cases in Mexico since the creation of the law in a wide range of industries, including telecommunications, television, radio, ports, airports, railways, energy and other regulated sectors, as well as retail and many other goods and services markets.
Q: How does the firm provide added value in its services?
RV: We are among the most experienced firms in competition and antitrust because our firm was practically born with the former Federal Economic Competition Law. This law was enforced in 1993 and we established ourselves as a law firm shortly afterward. There are not many firms that specialize in this area in Mexico because it is very complex and is constantly changing. Our advantage is that almost 100 percent of the services that we provide are related to competition and antitrust, which makes us the best option for companies seeking specialized services in this area.
EP: We have long-time loyal clients because they see in Valdes Abascal a serious and reliable law firm. Our years of experience and our close relationship with competition authorities, COFECE and IFT, make us the ideal ally for them. Large law firms in Mexico oversee a wide variety of areas but they do not necessarily have the knowledge to address specific issues related to competition and antitrust law. Even other law firms seek our experience in competition and antitrust matters.
Q: How has competition law evolved and what are the key issues you face?
RV: Mexico’s economic growth and its exposure to the international market have bolstered the country’s competitiveness and productivity, but this has also generated a more complex scenario for ensuring a fair and competitive environment for companies. As a firm, we are prepared to face all kinds of antitrust matters such as counseling and representation in investigations regarding absolute or relative monopolistic practices, premerger notifications, compliance programs, design and implementation of regulation, among others.
EP: Pre-merger notification processes have always played a large role in Mexico’s competitive environment but in recent years they have increased considerably. At the same time, the number of investigations regarding anticompetitive practices among companies is also on the rise, resulting in a greater need for the services we provide. We believe that Mexico can continue to grow nationally and internationally with the implementation of solid competition and antitrust culture.
Q: What has been done specifically to ensure a level and fair playing field in Mexico?
RV: The Constitutional Reform of 2013 and the Federal Economic Competition Law of 2014 generated a process of adjustments that have helped to improve the Mexican economy. These modifications have improved access to inputs and made it easier for international competition to enter the country.
EP: The Federal Economic Competition Law of 2014 robustly regulates economic competition and punishes severely antitrust behavior in Mexico. New players in highconcentration sectors are more willing and motivated to participate if there is just economic interaction with state-owned companies and large private companies. By enforcing the law, authorities are protecting competitive process and preventing the formation of monopolistic practices that affect the market and consumers. This also encourages companies to be more efficient.