On 17 November 2022, the Competition and Consumer Commission of Singapore issued an infringement decision against four warehouse operators for infringing section 34 of the Competition Act 2004. The four warehouse operators had entered into a price-fixing arrangement by imposing a coordinated surcharge, known as the “FTZ Surcharge”, for warehouse services at Keppel Distripark. The FTZ surcharge is a surcharge imposed by warehouse operators on import cargo stored within the Free Trade Zone, and it was first introduced in order to manage rising costs. The CCCS imposed a total financial penalty of SGD 2,799,138 on the four businesses, namely CNL Logistics Solutions Pte. Ltd., Gilmon Transportation & Warehousing Pte. Ltd., Penanshin (PSA KD) Pte. Ltd. and Mac-Nels (KD) Terminal Pte. Ltd.
The Association of Southeast Asian Nations Economic Ministers agreed to strengthen competition policy and enforcement cooperation at the 54th ASEAN Economic Ministers’ Meeting held in Siem Reap, Cambodia from 13 to 15 September 2022.
Businesses that operate in the Southeast Asia region are encouraged to undertake a timely review of their operations to ensure that they do not fall foul of competition laws.
KPPU, Indonesia’s competition authority, is taking an increasingly aggressive stance, as seen in its latest decision on partnerships between a large corporation and small and micro enterprises. In that case, a maximum fine of IDR 10 billion (approx. USD 670,000) was imposed on a large corporation that was viewed by KPPU as controlling the SMEs it partners with. This recent development could indicate the start of a more rigorous approach to enforcement by KPPU against SME partnerships.
Beyond resilience, the supply chains of the future are expected to be sustainable, embracing ESG principles. In the seventh webinar of our Supply Chain Series, our panel of experts will discuss the emerging and anticipated business issues, practical applications and legal considerations that companies need to consider, as they integrate corporate governance into the value chain, look at access to medicines and medical devices in a post-pandemic era, explore sustainable alternatives such as corporate power purchase agreements, and navigate the growing convergence of antitrust and ESG.
The Competition Guidelines outline how the Competition and Consumer Commission of Singapore’s analytical and procedural framework for administering the Competition Act 2004. Businesses should conduct a review of their existing business operations in Singapore to ensure that they are in line with these Competition Guidelines.
As previously reported, the Competition and Consumer Commission of Singapore commenced public consultation on the Business Collaboration Guidance Note from 30 July to 27 August 2021.
The Competition and Consumer Commission of Singapore will issue a Business Collaboration Guidance Note to provide businesses with more clarity on common horizontal, vertical and lateral collaborations between competitors. The draft Guidance Note also aims at encouraging collaborations that have pro-competitive effects. It covers six common types of business collaborations: information sharing, joint production, joint commercialization, joint purchasing, joint research and development, and standardization.
The Competition and Consumer Commission of Singapore’s (CCCS) Guidance Note on Collaborations between Competitors in Response to the COVID-19 Pandemic (“COVID-19 Guidance Note”) expires on 31 July 2021. The CCCS intends to issue a Business Collaboration Guidance Note to ‘provide businesses with more clarity on common collaborations between competitors’. This is so that ‘businesses can collaborate in compliance with competition law with greater confidence’.
The Competition and Consumer Commission of Singapore (CCCS) commenced public consultation on its proposed amendments to the Guidelines on the Appropriate Amount of Penalty in Competition Cases (“Penalty Guidelines”) on 16 July 2021. The proposed amendments clarify the CCCS’s policy position on the treatment of undertakings that did not play a leader, instigator or proactive participant role in an infringement; and illustrate when “substantially limited involvement” by an undertaking in an infringement of the section 34 prohibition under the Competition Act (Cap 50b) (“Act”) would amount to a mitigating factor. The closing date for public consultation submissions is 5 August 2021.
Four new deliverables were introduced after a mid-term review of the original ASEAN Competition Action Plan 2016-2025. These include a new ASEAN Information Portal on Merger Cases, a new ASEAN Investigation Manual on Competition Policy and Law for the Digital Economy, initiatives to promote discussions between heads of competition authorities on the harmonization of competition policy and law, and a refreshed regional capacity building roadmap for 2021 to 2025.