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Academic Articles Awards > Asian Antitrust

Competition Law in Singapore

Kala Anandarajah and Dominique Lombardi, CPI Antitrust Chronicle (1), August 2015

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Readers’ vote will close on February 15, 2016. Readers’ vote will allow you to nominate 1 article for each of the Awards, i.e., 10 Academic articles, 10 Business articles, and the best Soft Laws. The readers’ short-list of Academic and Business Articles will be communicated to the Board together with the 20 articles nominated by the Steering Committees. The Board will decide on the award-winning articles. Results will be announced at the Awards ceremony to take place in Washington DC on the eve of the ABA Antitrust Spring Meeting on April 5, 2016.

Singapore was one of the first ASEAN countries to adopt (and enforce effectively) a generic competition law. The decision to introduce a generic competition law was based on the recommendations of the Economic Review Committee in 2003 to “create a level playing field for businesses, big and small, to compete on equal footing.”2
The adoption of the Competition Act (Cap.50B) in 2004 (“Act”) was also triggered by the United States-Singapore Free Trade Agreement (“USSFTA”) that entered into force on January 1, 2004 and set out extensive competition-related obligations. In particular, Article 12.2 of the USSFTA required Singapore to (a) adopt or maintain measures to proscribe anticompetitive business and (b) establish an authority responsible for the enforcement of the measures to proscribe anticompetitive business conduct. Under the USSFTA, Singapore committed to enact a generic competition law by January 2005.
The Act has two main purposes: to provide a generic law to ensure fair competition in Singapore markets and to establish the Competition Commission of Singapore (“CCS”). The CCS is a statutory body under the purview of the Ministry of Trade and Industry (“MTI”), responsible for administering and enforcing the substantive provisions of the Act.
Complementing the Competition Act are various regulations issued either by the Minister of Trade and Industry (“the Minister”) or the CCS with the approval of the Minister. The regulations provide details on (i) the various processes or fees that the infringing party or the parties need to comply with in the event of an investigation by the CCS, (ii) proposed infringement decisions by the CCS, (iii) applications by one or more parties to the CCS to get guidance or a decision from the CCS, and (iv) appeals against a decision by the CCS.

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