Antitrust Review Rules Amended

China’s Ministry of Commerce (MOFCOM) issued a draft for comment of its revised Provisions on the Antitrust Review of Concentrations on September 8. The Provisions were first issued in 2009 and act as the regulator’s rule-book for reviewing proposed merger concentrations. China’s first Anti-Monopoly Law went into effect in 2008 after nearly a decade of drafting.
The amendments primarily serve to update the provisions to reflect MOFCOM’s practices over the past nine years since the AML went into effect. They include new provisions that cover mutually conditional transactions, concentration parties, and investigations into transactions that fail to reach the statutory threshold. Regarding the last point, the updated Provisionsmaintain that even a concentration that does not reach the statutory threshold may still be investigative provided that MOFCOM believes anti-competitive effects exist.
MOFCOM is accepting comments on the draft until October 9, 2017.