In a landmark move, the Chinese government announced plans to amend the Anti-Monopoly Law (AML), China’s prime antitrust statute. The announcement was made on September 2, 2015, when the State Council released its legislative work agenda. The amendment will be the first since the AML came into force over 7 years ago.
China’s three antitrust authorities – the Ministry of Commerce, the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC), and the State Administration for Industry and Commerce (SAIC) – will jointly prepare the amendments to the AML. Separately, SAIC is tasked with preparing the revision of the Anti-Unfair Competition Law (AUCL), and NDRC with the amendment of the Price Law. Both the AUCL and the Price Law contain some antitrust provisions.
Given the current economic climate, it is possible the amended AML, AUCL and Price Law may lead to further compliance obligations for market players. Foreign companies doing business in and with China should continue monitoring developments and provide stakeholder input into the legislative process where appropriate.