In recent years, antitrust has become more and more important for China, which is consistent with the global trend. In 2018, China launched the reform of its antitrust authorities. Under that reform, the antitrust law enforcement functions formerly split among the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC), the Ministry of Commerce, and the State Administration for Industry and Commerce were merged into the newly established State Administration for Market Regulation (SAMR), which made good preparation for enhancing antitrust law enforcement. Moreover, the fact that the 2020 Central Economic Work Conference listed antitrust and preventing disorderly capital expansion as one of the eight economic key tasks in 2021 shows that the Central Committee … Read the rest
On June 26, 2019, the State Administration for Market Regulation (hereinafter “SAMR”) promulgated three interim provisions in implementing Anti-Trust Law, all of which would come into effect on September 1, 2019. Respectively, these new regulations would govern three categories of monopolistic behaviors: monopoly agreements, abuse of dominant market position, and abuse of administrative power to exclude or restrict competition.
SAMR’s triple guidance on antitrust enforcement came against the backdrop of the “three-in-one” anti-trust law enforcement agency reform in 2018. Against such background, SAMR aims to unify the fragmented tripartite enforcement scheme as existed previously where three separate agencies shared overlapped authorities. These new regulations, as the … Read the rest
In the e-commerce market, quite a few platform operators in China – such as JD, Gome, and PDD (PinDuoDuo) – require suppliers to accept a Wide Retail Most-Favored-Nation Clause (“RMFN Clause”).This Clause requires suppliers to promise the platform that it will grant it equally favorable terms as granted to any other platform. VIP.COM,the largest e-commerce platform in South China, also uses that Clause. This article shows the anti-competitive effects of RMFN clause gravely overwhelms the pro-competitive effects. In recent years, RMFNs have been scrutinized by the US Justice Department, the European Commission, as well as the national competition authorities of various EU member states.
China is the biggest E-commerce market in the world. However, … Read the rest
Qianhai Pilot Free Trade Zone (“Qianhai”), an innovative area in Shenzhen, aims to create an effective and more transparent antitrust enforcement mechanism. Qianhai is seeking to serve as a role model for the country by improving the transparency of antitrust investigations. The Guidelines on Anti-monopoly Work (“Guideline”) promulgated by the Qianhai Management Committee (“Committee”) is a big step towards achieving this goal.
This article, divided into five sections, provides an overview of how the Guideline improves antitrust transparency. Section One explains the problem of transparency of antitrust investigation in current laws and practices. The next three sections articulate three important institutional reforms in the Guideline: clarifying investigation authority and the process before investigation, … Read the rest