Authored by Mr. Michael Gu (Partner at AnJie Law Firm) and Ms. Sun Sihui
For the last two years, the State Administration for Industry and Commerce (SAIC) has exercised its law enforcement powers in a rather smooth and steady manner. SAIC's steady hand contrasts starkly with the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC)'s frequent heavy anti-trust fines and its round after round of anti-trust enforcement actions..With the exceptions of the Microsoft and Tetra Pak cases, none of the SAIC's cases have become very public. In fact, the SAIC has carried out all its investigations into monopoly behaviors in an orderly manner, unless the conduct directly involves prices. According to SAIC official Mr. Zhao Guobin who addressed the subject at a recent anti-trust seminar , up until October 2015, the SAIC authorized local commerce and industry administrations to open 57 cases, of which 23 cases have been closed and four cases have been suspended. In those cases, the entities were punished for monopoly conduct violating the Anti-Monopoly Law of the PRC (AML) and related regulations; more than half were cases involving monopoly agreements, but the percentage of cases involving an abuse of dominant market position has gradually increased. On 13 October 2015, the Anhui administration for industry and commerce (Anhui AIC) published a case where the party was fined for not cooperating with the investigation conducted by the anti-trust law enforcement agency. This is the first case published by anti-trust law enforcement agencies which level led a penalty for not cooperating with the investigation.
The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.