April 05, 2011

OFT to Cooperate with China to Tackle Competition and Consumer Issues

The Office of Fair Trading (OFT) in the UK has signed a Memorandum of Understanding in China committing to cooperation and the exchange of best practice on competition and consumer policy and enforcement.

The agreement between the OFT and China's State Administration for Industry and Commerce (SAIC) was signed in Beijing last week as part of a UKTI visit.

In the context of China's new Anti-Monopoly Law, the OFT will exchange expertise on issues including abuse of dominance, the relationship between intellectual property and competition and market definitions. The MOU also facilitates cooperation with China in handling common and complex consumer protection issues such as cross-border purchasing and protecting consumers online.

The signing is part of an ongoing programme of cooperation between the UK and China in this area and follows the signing of an MOU with China's National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) in January in London.  The OFT is expected to sign a further agreement with China's Ministry of Commerce (MOFCOM) in June.

It is hoped that working with the Chinese authorities to tackle restrictions on competition will help organisations in both countries to compete on an open and level playing field.

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