The Asia-Pacific Antitrust Review 2018

China: Vertical Agreements

19 March 2018

Antitrust issues related to vertical agreements have triggered disputes between suppliers and distributors, as well as complaints from interested parties, in recent years. Since 2013, resale price maintenance (RPM) has been subject to heightened antitrust scrutiny. The probes, led by China’s National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) with the support of the delegated local enforcers, have resulted in fines exceeding two billion yuan against suppliers and distributors of liquors, baby formulas, automobiles, medical devices, eyeglass lenses, consumer electronics, pasteurised milk, turbo oil products, etc. By the end of 2017, a number of investigations against RPM were ongoing.1 Thus far, no investigations have been initiated against stand-alone vertical non-price restrictions.

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