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Business Articles Awards > Asian Antitrust

Both NDRC and SAIC Shed Light on the Antitrust Scrutiny on Pharmaceutical Industries

Stephen Crosswell et al., Baker & McKenzie Client Alert, March 2016

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Recently published antitrust decisions by China’s two leading antitrust enforcers (addressed to the same Chinese pharmaceutical company) show that the pharma sector remains an antitrust enforcement target in China. Major differences in the way that the cases were investigated by the two agencies are a stark reminder of the need for skilled local advice when advising companies that may become embroiled in Chinese antitrust investigations. In December 2015, the Chongqing municipal branch of the State Administration for Industry and Commerce (Chongqing AIC, a municipal branch of SAIC) fined Chongqing Qingyang Pharmaceuticals (“Chongqing Qingyang”) RMB 439,308.53 (about USD 68,000) for illegally refusing to supply an active pharmaceutical ingredient (“API”), allopurinol. Then, in early February 2016, the National Development and Reform Commission (“NDRC”) published its full decision in a separate case, in which Chongqing Qingyang (which had subsequently restarted supplies of allopurinol) was found to have colluded with competing suppliers of allopurinol based finished dose pharmaceuticals to fix prices and allocate customers and bids. The companies involved in the cartel have been fined RMB 3,995,400 (about USD 618,483) in total.

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