On April 10, 2021, the State Administration for Market Regulation (SAMR) imposed a fine of RMB18.228 billion (USD 2.8 billion) against Alibaba which equals 4% of Alibaba's sales in China in 2019. This fine is 3 times the amount Qualcomm received in 2015, RMB 6.066 billion (USD 933 million), imposed by the National Development and Reform Commission, and is believed to be the highest amount in history.
Alibaba Group has a dominant position in China's domestic online retail platform service market. According to SAMR's investigation, since 2015, Alibaba Group has abused its dominant position and has imposed "choose one out of two" requirements on merchants on the platform, prohibiting merchants on the platform from opening stores or participating in promotional activities on other competitive platforms, and using market forces and even technical means to ensure the implementation of the "choose one out of two" requirement. SAMR found that Alibaba Group's "chose one out of two" behaviors have eliminated and restricted competition in the online retail platform service market in China, and constituted the act of "restricting the counterparty of transactions to do transactions solely with them without justified reasons," which is defined as an abuse of market dominance and prohibited by the provisions of Article 17, Paragraph 1(4) of the Anti-Monopoly Law.
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