CCI to notify new merger control regulations to simplify market complexities

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NEW DELHI : The Competition Commission of India (CCI) will soon notify new merger control regulations, Ravneet Kaur, the chairperson of the Competition Commission of India (CCI) said. Kaur was addressing the 15th Foundation Day in New Delhi.

Established in 2003 CCI is the chief national competition regulator in India.

Underlining the achievements of the commission since its establishment, she added, “CCI has been instrumental in curbing anti-competitive practices dismantling barriers to entry and ensuring that businesses operate on a level playing field. our efforts have not only provided innovation and efficiency among the businesses contributed to the overall welfare of the nation and have also protected the interests of the consumers.”

Speaking about the changes happening in the business landscape around the world, she added, “Around the world, we have witnessed a significant shift as countries revamp their competition laws to address the complexities introduced by new age markets. The digital economy has challenged traditional competition law framework worldwide.”

Competition regulators worldwide have been closely examining large technological corporations more recently. Market domination tactics, anti-competitive agreements, and mergers that may impede competition have been the subject of investigations.

“To comprehend market dynamics, consumer consequences, and competitive implications of digital platforms, the various competition authorities are implementing advanced techniques and methodologies to analyze markets in the digital era,” she continued.

Kaur announced that the CCI is in the process of launching a market study on artificial intelligence. The study will be a knowledge-building exercise to develop an in-depth understanding of the emerging competitive landscape.

She further added the commission’s enforcement actions have been more robust than ever with significant penalties imposed on those undermining the competitive spirit of the market.

Going further, she added, the commission is preparing a new regulatory framework under the New Competition Amendment Act 2023, which has been targeted to address emerging challenges and align the framework with international best practices.

She also pointed out the issue of market concentration in the digital market landscape. “One of the most important features of the digital markets is the tendency towards market concentration and many digital platforms benefit from network effects where the value of the service increases as more users join. This can quickly lead to a winner-take-all all scenario where one or few companies may dominate the market.”

Companies that can collect analyse and leverage vast amount of data can gain significant competitive advantages. This raises concerns about data dominance where control over large data sets can create insurmountable barriers to entry.

“Many digital markets are characterized by platform business models where a single entity controls access to a wide range of services. This raises the issue of platform neutrality, especially when the platform also competes with the businesses that rely on their infrastructure,” she added.

“Issues like algorithmic collusion might implicitly coordinate prices or market strategies without explicit human direction pose novel challenges for us,” she said.

According to the chairman, CCI is focusing on the emerging areas in the digital economy

The commission has issued a draft digital competition bill to address issues in regulations,” Kaur informed. (ANI)

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