The impending commencement of Hong Kong's first cross-sector
competition law brings to Hong Kong businesses a fresh challenge of
managing competition law risk.
As the saying goes, "prevention is better than cure".
Business performance is all about improving competitiveness in an
evolving market. As competition lies at the core of business
strategy, competition law risk management will inevitably become an
element of success. The more you are alive to competition law
considerations at the very inception of business strategy, the
better you will be able to avoid the pitfalls and compete
efficiently and intelligently at the outset.
Effective compliance generates value. Not only does it help you
stay ahead of your competitors, it can also earn you a stellar
reputation in the eyes of consumers and save you millions in
avoidable legal cost. Knowing your rights can also protect your
business from unfair competition, for example, if your competitors
gang up on you.
Fear Not, We Get It
Mayer Brown JSM understands the prospect of a new law that can
be enforced against almost all business conduct can be daunting,
especially as the types of conduct that potentially give rise to
competition law risk are myriad.
To help businesses navigate the minefield of competition law and
to cultivate a culture of compliance, Mayer Brown JSM will,
throughout the next few months, publish a series of articles on the
types of conduct to which the Conduct Rules will apply. Hopefully
by the time the law comes into force, you will become something of
an expert on competition law!
The Golden Rules
Before we delve into the specifics, we set out below fundamental
"Golden Rules", which are a basic but useful gauge of
whether your intended conduct may entail competition law risk:
Businesses should compete
Collaboration among independent
businesses may be pro-competitive if there is good commercial
justification (usually this means consumer benefit, as well as
efficiency gains or innovation):
Improved product and/or service
Market power should not be used to
exploit business partners or customers.
Next week we kick off our series of articles with an overview of
the Cardinal Sins, i.e., the four most serious types of
anti-competitive conduct under the new Competition Ordinance (Cap.
Mayer Brown is a global legal services organization
comprising legal practices that are separate entities (the Mayer
Brown Practices). The Mayer Brown Practices are: Mayer Brown LLP, a
limited liability partnership established in the United States;
Mayer Brown International LLP, a limited liability partnership
incorporated in England and Wales; Mayer Brown JSM, a Hong Kong
partnership, and its associated entities in Asia; and Tauil &
Chequer Advogados, a Brazilian law partnership with which Mayer
Brown is associated. "Mayer Brown" and the Mayer Brown
logo are the trademarks of the Mayer Brown Practices in their
This article provides information and comments on legal
issues and developments of interest. The foregoing is not a
comprehensive treatment of the subject matter covered and is not
intended to provide legal advice. Readers should seek specific
legal advice before taking any action with respect to the matters
discussed herein. Please also read the JSM legal publications
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