The basis for the relations between the EU and Mexico is the Economic Partnership, Political Co-ordination and Cooperation Agreement (usually named the Global Agreement), which entered into force in 2000.
The EC-Mexico Joint Council Decision 2/2000 also contains provisions on
- Establishing cooperation in the field of competition;
- Giving notice of enforcement activities which may affect the territory of the other Party;
- Exchanging information and coordinating enforcement activities and conflict avoidance.
In 2018, the EU and Mexico reached an agreement in principle on the trade part of a new FTA, that once ratified, will replace the existing EU-Mexico Global Agreement. The new EU-Mexico FTA contains provisions both on competition (antitrust and mergers) and subsidies.
As regards competition (antitrust and mergers), the EU-Mexico FTA provides for the obligation of the Parties to prohibit anticompetitive practices and to have an operationally independent competition authority. The competition rules in the FTA also provide for the possibility for the Parties to cooperate between their respective competition authorities with the possibility to agree on a separate cooperation agreement.
As regards subsidies, the EU-Mexico FTA provides for a definition based on the WTO rules (ASCM), transparency obligations, a consultation mechanism as well as rules on prohibited subsidies (unlimited guarantees and rescue and restructuring subsidies that do not comply with certain conditions).
The Commission and the Federal Economic Competition Commission of Mexico (COFECE) signed an Administrative Arrangement on Cooperation in the Field of Competition Law and Enforcement in 2018. The Administrative arrangement provides for:
- The exchange of non-confidential information;
- Coordination of enforcement activities concerning the same or related matters;
- Consultation mechanism in order to avoid conflicts on enforcement activities (negative comity);
- The possibility for a Party to request to the other Party to initiate appropriate enforcement activities in accordance with the Party’s competition law (positive comity);
- The possibility of having technical cooperation (capacity building) subject to reasonably available resources.