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China Introduces New Antitrust Rules Against Tech Giants

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China has introduced new antitrust rules in the country aimed at restricting the activities of the country’s large technology companies. The corresponding bill on anti-monology was published in November last year.

The rules are expected to put pressure on the country’s leading internet services, including e-commerce sites such as Alibaba Group’s Taobao and Tmall, as well as JD.com. The law also applies to payment services such as Alipay Ant Group and WeChat Pay from Tencent Holding.

The rules, published by the State Administration for Market Regulation (SAMR), prohibit companies from various behaviors, including forcing sellers to choose between the leading Internet players, which is a long-standing practice in the market.

Also, it is now impossible to force sellers to choose between supporting specific services and applications, as well as terminate actions that can fix prices, restrict technologies and use other methods of market manipulation. The State Administration for Market Regulatory Affairs said the number of reports of antitrust behavior related to the Internet is on the rise. The new rules were introduced as SAMR faces challenges in regulating the industry.

SAMR already launched an antitrust investigation against the Alibaba Group in December last year. Regulators have warned Alibaba against actions such as forcing sellers to enter into exclusive pacts and cooperation agreements that could prevent them from using competitors’ platforms.

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