According to Nikkei, the new antitrust law imposes harsher penalties for violations, barring big tech firms from using their market advantages to force smaller suppliers into contracts. monopoly business. This is the first amendment to the Antitrust Law since it was enacted in 2008.
China’s new Antitrust Law will impose stricter penalties on violations
Chinese authorities began tightening regulations on Big Tech last year. This sector accounts for the majority of financial penalties in 2021, most of which stem from antitrust violations. The official entry into force of the amendment also means that the law has caught up with Beijing’s actual implementation plan.
Immediately after China enacted its first Antitrust Law, foreign multinational companies significantly violated competition rules. In 2015, US chipmaker Qualcomm was fined 6 billion yuan (about $975 million) at the time, for allegedly abusing its market position.
The emergence of major domestic technology platforms has attracted the attention of Chinese regulators. In 2019, the Beijing government instructed the antitrust body, the State Administration of Market Regulation, to clamp down on the tech giants. Amendments to the Antitrust law began to be proposed around this time.
In November 2020, authorities tightened the “choose one” business model, often used by tech giants to require suppliers not to be allowed to do business with rival platforms. In April 2021, Chinese e-commerce company Alibaba Group Holding was fined a record 18.2 billion yuan. Leading food delivery app Meituan was also fined 3.4 billion yuan. After this fine, Alibaba said it would follow instructions from regulators. Meituan announced to stop participating in “choose one of two”.
According to local media, the amount of fines obtained for violating the Antitrust Law last year, including confiscated income, amounted to 23.5 billion yuan, an increase of nearly 50 times compared to 2020. Of which, technology companies accounted for 21.7 billion yuan, or 92% of the fine.