Chapter 3: Korea
Competition law is one of the most rapidly developing areas of law in Korea, and has seen dramatic developments over the past decade. The most recent change came in 2002, when the Korea Fair Trade Commission (KFTC) undertook to achieve its goal of enhancing economic efficiency and consumer welfare by promoting and eliminating certain behaviors that hinder competition in the market. The KFTC is a ministerial-level central administrative organization under the authority of the prime minister and also functions as a quasi-judiciary body. The idea of ensuring fair trade in the Korean market has become one of the major tasks of the Korean government and the KFTC has been the vehicle to implement this objective. Over the years, the KFTC has conducted investigations into various sectors of the economy. The active engagement of the KFTC has indeed helped to establish a ‘fair trade’ environment in Korea. As a result, consumers have become more willing to come forward when they encounter anti-competitive activities and the KFTC has been quick to respond to public concern.
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