Elgar Intellectual Property Law and Practice series
Edited by Stefan Luginbuehl and Peter Ganea
Chapter 17: CHINESE ANTI-MONOPOLY LAW
Only a decade ago, an observer of the Chinese economy would have laughed at the prediction that a Chinese anti-monopoly law would be actively applied. Today, in 2013, news about the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) investigating price-fixing behaviours by baby powder producers (including their relationship between manufacturers, distributors and retailers), fining LCD panel manufacturers for price-fixing cartelsand probing drug pricing govern the headlines of the China Daily and Financial Times. No doubt, anti-monopoly law is about to become an actively applied part of the Chinese legal system. Work on relevant legislation started as early as 1987. In 1994, the drafting of a cartel law was finally included in the Legislative Plan of the National People’s Congress. The Anti-Monopoly Law AML was passed on 30 August 2007 and became effective on 1 August 2008. The drafting process had been a difficult issue which also involved turf battles between different Chinese authorities. Very quickly within the first year of enacting the new law, all involved enforcement agencies demonstrated a proactive approach on gathering expertise and improving the enforcement transparency and certainty. A plethora of related administrative regulations has been passed since. The legislator’s foundation of an actively applied anti-monopoly law is still under construction and currently still appears somewhat influenced by case law and experiences from US and European counterparts. The following overview only lists the most important laws and regulations which can be applied to anti-monopoly cases. Some general laws such as the Contract Act in its Article 329 also contain provisions which may be applicable in individual cases:
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