China fined 12 companies for violating antitrust laws

The Chinese government today said it has fined 12 companies for participating in 10 transactions that show signs of violating antitrust laws. China’s State Market Regulatory Administration said the list includes companies such as Baidu, Tencent, Didi Chuxing, SoftBank and a firm affiliated with ByteDance.

According to a statement from the regulator, each of the companies was fined only $ 77,000. This is due to the fact that, although their activities were aimed at capturing the market, they did not exclude the possibility of competition from other companies. Some of the fined companies, such as Alibaba and China Literature, backed by Tencent, were fined for failing to properly report transactions, making it difficult to conduct antitrust checks.

As for the defendants in the case, Tencent promised to bring operations in line with the accepted norms and provide the regulator with information on future transactions in a timely manner. ByteDance said the sanctioned joint venture between its subsidiary and Shanghai Dongfang Newspaper Co Ltd never functioned and was disbanded in January. SoftBank, Baidu and Didi did not comment on the situation.

In recent months, China has tightened its grip on internet giants, citing concerns about their monopoly behavior and potential consumer abuse.

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