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U.S., Russian Antitrust Agencies Join Forces

(CN) - The Federal Trade Commission and the Department of Justice have signed an antitrust cooperation agreement with the Federal Antimonopoly Service of Russia to promote and strengthen relationships between U.S. and Russian antitrust agencies.

The agreement, signed Tuesday in Washington, D.C., provides that the United States and Russia will "work to keep each other informed of significant competition policy and enforcement developments in their respective jurisdictions."

The agreement also calls for periodic meetings and advice exchange on competition enforcement and policy.

Although the United States has antitrust agreements with other foreign jurisdictions, this is its first agency-to-agency agreement.

"Sometimes people are reluctant to pick up the phone and so this agreement relieves us of that worry," Russell Damtoft, associate director of the FTC's Office of International Affairs said in a telephone interview.

The agreement was signed by FTC Chairman Jon Leibowitz, Assistant U.S. Attorney Christine Varney and the Antimonopoly Service's head, Igor Artemyev.

The Commission voted 4-0 in favor of signing the agreement.

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