China planning to draft regulation for e-commerce platforms: Report

WION Web Team
Beijing Published: Mar 16, 2021, 09:48 AM(IST)

his file photo taken on October 30, 2020, shows the logo of the Alibaba Group outside the offices of the Ant Group, the financial arm of the Chinese e-commerce giant, in Hong Kong. Photograph:( AFP )

Story highlights

Chinese regulators had fined 12 tech firms including Tencent, Baidu and ByteDance for allegedly flouting monopoly rules.

According to China's state-run news agency Xinhua, regulators are planning to draft new rules for the country's e-commerce platforms.

Xinhua, quoting market regulators, said that the regulators will “adopt more powerful regulatory measures this year with a series of actions” to "standardise online deals, maintain fair competition and protect consumer rights".

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The move comes as authorities reportedly took down nearly 234,000 examples of improper online sales information between October and December last year.

Chinese authorities recently cracked down on Alibaba even as its legendry founder Jack Ma had disappeared from public view for a few months until mid-January. 

According to state broadcaster CCTV, President Xi Jinping chaired a meeting of the Communist party’s top financial and coordination committee, ordering regulators to step up oversight of internet companies.

The financial regulators had earlier disallowed the $35 billion Hong Kong-Shanghai IPO of Alibaba's online payment subsidiary Ant Group. The Chinese officials had launched an investigation into Alibaba's business practices which it deemed as anti-competitive.

The Chinese market regulator reportedly denied they were planning to fine the company almost $1 billion for anti-competitive behaviour.

The country's regulators fined 12 tech firms including Tencent, Baidu and ByteDance for allegedly flouting monopoly rules.

Tencent was fined $77,000 for its 2018 investment in online education app Yuanfudao without reportedly seeking prior government approval.

Chinese premier Li Keqiang had said that the government would "strengthen anti-monopoly laws" and "prevent the disorderly expansion of capital".

The country had earlier announced plans to boost supervision of its lucrative fintech sector.  Keqiang had asserted that there was a need to "manage financial risks and ensure that no systemic risks arise".

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