The Chinese MOFCOM recent merger decision on consumer electronics highlights the continuing challenges in Chinese merger control procedure (Panasonic / Sanyo)

On October 30, 2009, China’s Ministry of Commerce (“MOFCOM”) issued its decision in the Panasonic/Sanyo case, and published a summary of the decision on its website. The Panasonic/Sanyo transaction is the most recent of a series of cases where MOFCOM imposed conditions when issuing antitrust clearance. The decision Panasonic’s proposed acquisition of Sanyo was notified to MOFCOM on January 21, 2009. After its initial review indicated possible competition issues, MOFCOM opened a 90-day in-depth investigation, which it extended by two months . According to its official published summary, MOFCOM found anticompetitive effects in three relevant markets for batteries, two of which were found to be worldwide in geographic

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