The Department of Justice’s Antitrust Division has joined the Framework on Competition Agency Procedures as a founding member, the agency announced today.

“This historic multilateral agreement recognizes fundamental principles of transparency and procedural fairness in antitrust enforcement and promotes review mechanisms to ensure that participating agencies abide by these norms,” the Department of Justice stated.

The framework adopted the principles outlined by the Multilateral Framework on Procedures, as described by Assistant Attorney General Makan Delrahim in a speech at the Council on Foreign Relations in June 2018. It was adopted by the International Competition Network (ICN) on April 3, 2019, and it became open for all national, supranational, and customs territory-specific competition agencies, both ICN member and non-member agencies, to join as participants on May 1, 2019.

“I encourage our antitrust enforcement partners around the world to become founding members of this historic multilateral framework on procedures,” Delrahim said. “Broad participation in the new framework will demonstrate our universal commitment to transparency and fairness, and it will strengthen cooperation among and confidence in antitrust enforcement agencies across the globe.”

The Framework on Competition Agency Procedures will come into effect on May 15 at an inauguration ceremony of the founding members during the ICN annual conference in Cartagena, Colombia.

The ICN, founded by 15 agencies including the Department of Justice’s Antitrust Division, was created in October 2001 to increase understanding of competition policy and promote convergence toward sound antitrust enforcement around the world. The ICN has grown to include 138 member-agencies from 125 jurisdictions, supported by a wide network of non-governmental advisors from around the world.