Strict info exchange regime questioned in Asia

Author: Brian Yap | Published: 25 Apr 2016

As Hong Kong’s antitrust watchdog gears up to take on the city’s trade cartels, its tough stance on information exchange has left businesses struggling to comply with the new rules.

The Competition Commission, established under the December 2015 Competition Ordinance, has since incorporated information exchange among competitors in its antitrust regime.

Stephen Crosswell, Baker & Mckenzie
But counsel in Hong Kong have noticed a sharp increase in the number of clients seeking advice on compliance with the new regulations, citing concerns over the absence of recourse to block exemptions.

"People have questioned whether this is the right approach for Hong Kong," said Stephen Crosswell, partner at Baker & McKenzie. "In other jurisdictions like Australia, you don’t have such strict standards."

“This is something we hear from our clients quite a lot - how legitimately do we get information to help us make the decisions we need to...