29 de April de 2024

Competition in digital markets: strong messages in Brazil and in the UK

This post marks the beginning of a series in which our Antitrust, Administrative, and Anti-Corruption Law team will analyze the most relevant aspects of regulatory models for preserving competition in digital markets and in relation to artificial intelligence, in Brazil and other jurisdictions.

In the following weeks, we will delve into more detail on the important public consultation launched by the Ministry of Finance, the main competition and regulatory concerns identified so far (in Brazil and other countries) regarding digital markets and artificial intelligence, the possible role to be played by CADE (the local antitrust agency) and other regulatory agencies, regulatory options implemented in other jurisdictions, ongoing investigations by CADE, among other topics.

We begin by emphasizing two important messages from yesterday, April 24, 2024, regarding regulation and competition preservation were conveyed, in Brazil and in the United Kingdom.

During an event in Brasília, the Secretary of Economic Reforms of the Ministry of Finance, Marcos Pinto, stated that Brazil needs to preserve competition in digital markets. Earlier this year, the Ministry of Finance initiated a public consultation aimed at gathering contributions for eventual regulation. The questionnaire asks, for example, whether there are reasons to regulate or not regulate certain platforms and whether the Brazilian legal framework is prepared to deal with these companies.

The public consultation also inquires whether the local antitrust legislation needs improvements and whether there are issues related to the use of algorithms, discriminatory practices, the use of personal data, and the risks of not adopting a pro-competitive model.

Also yesterday, in the United Kingdom, the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) opened invitations for comments from interested third parties to provide their views on whether partnerships between Microsoft and Mistral AI, and Amazon and Anthropic, as well as the hiring of former employees by Microsoft and agreements related to Inflection AI, comply with the UK’s merger rules and the impact these agreements may have on competition in the UK.

This announcement came after the release of a recent report by the CMA, which describes the three main risks to open, fair, and effective competition in the foundational Artificial Intelligence models markets. In particular, the CMA addressed concerns that partnerships involving key players may be exacerbating existing market power positions throughout the FM value chain.

In our next post, we will analyze in more detail the initiatives of the CMA.

This bulletin is for information purposes only and should not be relied upon to obtain legal advice on any of the topics dealt with here. For additional information, please contact the leaders of the Antitrust, Administrative, and Anti-Corruption Law team.

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