The Application of China’s Anti-Monopoly Law to State-Owned Enterprises in Special Industries The Example of the China Telecom and China Unicom Case

Meng Yanbei, Jan 25, 2012

This case has drawn considerable public interest in the AML, and has captivated both academia and the international business community. Standing out among the questions discussed is whether the conduct of China Telecom and China Unicom constitutes an abuse of a dominant market position as prohibited by the AML. However, in addition to this now often discussed question, this antitrust case also exposes a string of other questions about whether the unique situation of state-owned enterprises (“SOEs”)-such as China Telecom and China Unicom- should be considered and whether the telecommunications industry has exceptional characteristics that need to be taken into account. Thus, one of the most important questions in the AML enforcement process-which reflects the circumstances specific to China-is how the AML is meant to regulate the conduct of SOEs in special industries.