On September 11, 2020, the Anti-Monopoly Commission of the State Council promulgated the Anti-Monopoly Compliance Guidance for Business Operators (“Guidance”), which came into force as of the date of promulgation.
To foster a fair competition compliance culture, establish an antitrust compliance management system, improve the understanding of monopoly, guard against antitrust compliance risk, guarantee the healthy development of operators and to promote the full implementation of the Anti-Monopoly Law of the People's Republic of China (“Anti-Monopoly Law”), the Anti-Monopoly Commission formulated the Guidance in accordance with the Anti-Monopoly Law and other laws and regulations.
According to the Guidance, business operators should be honest and trustworthy, compete fairly, advocate and cultivate a good compliance culture, strictly abide by laws in their production and business activities, and avoid monopolistic behaviors prohibited by relevant anti-monopoly laws. The establishment and effective implementation of the anti-monopoly compliance management system is conducive to improving the level of operation and management, avoiding compliance risks, and establishing a good image of lawful operation. Business operators may establish an anti-monopoly compliance management system according to their business status, size and industry characteristics, or carry out special anti-monopoly compliance management work within the existing compliance management system.
The Guidance encourages senior managers of operators as well as other employees to make and fulfill explicit and public anti-monopoly compliance commitments. The operator shall specify the consequences of breach of commitment in the relevant management system. Business operators are encouraged to carry out anti-monopoly compliance management comprehensively and effectively to prevent compliance risks. They are also encouraged to report in writing to the anti-monopoly law enforcement agency detailing the anti-monopoly compliance management system and its implementation effect. For qualified business operators, they are encouraged to set up anti-monopoly compliance departments or bring anti-monopoly compliance management into the existing compliance management system, to clarify compliance responsibilities and principals, to improve internal mechanisms such as anti-monopoly compliance consulting, compliance inspection, compliance reporting, compliance training, and compliance assessment, and to reduce compliance risks for managers and employees.
The anti-monopoly compliance department and its head manager shall have sufficient independence and authority to carry out the anti-monopoly compliance management effectively. The head of anti-monopoly compliance shall lead the compliance department in implementing decisions, coordinate the relationship between anti-monopoly compliance management and various businesses, and supervise the implementation of anti-monopoly compliance management. Senior managers of business operators are encouraged to lead or be in charge of the anti-monopoly compliance department and to undertake the organization and implementation of compliance management and overall coordination.
The Guidance stipulates that industry associations may refer to the Guidance for formulating the compliance management system of its own industry. Network platform operators may also refer to the Guidance for formulating the compliance management system for operators within the platform.
The Guidance consists of six chapters and thirty articles in total. Chapter I is general provisions, Chapter II is compliance management system, Chapter III focuses on compliance risks, Chapter IV is compliance risk management, Chapter V is compliance management guarantee, and Chapter VI is supplementary provisions.
This article was provided by our partner Allbright Law Offices China.