How China Deals with the Diverging Approaches to Monopoly Agreements
Over the first decade of China's Antimonopoly Law, we have seen a divergence between the approaches adopted by the Chinese antimonopoly enforcement agencies and the Chinese courts towards agreements that restrain trade; what in China are called "monopoly agreements," especially vertical agreements. The key difference is whether proof of anticompetitive effect is a necessary element to find an illegal agreement. Both the AMEAs and the courts have tried to converge their approaches. Until these conflicting approaches are unified, it is safer for companies operating in China to continue assuming that essentially all monopoly agreements will be treated as per se illegal.