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China Publishes Details of Anti-Monopoly Law

China has fleshed out its landmark anti-monopoly law, specifying turnover thresholds that will trigger a government review of proposed mergers.

All business combinations must be cleared by the Ministry of Commerce if the joint global revenue of the companies involved exceeds 10 billion yuan ($1.46 billion) or 2 billion yuan in China, the People's Daily reported on Tuesday.

Even then, a review would not be needed unless two or more of the firms each had more than 400 million yuan of revenue in China during the previous accounting year, the paper said.

For the purpose of law, business "combinations" encompass mergers and acquisitions; share or asset sales that give one company control of another; and the signature of contracts that cede control or decisive influence to another firm, it said.

The newspaper cited detailed regulations published on Monday by the State Council, China's cabinet.

Foreign business executives had urged the government to quickly publish details of how the long-awaited law, which went into force on Friday, would be implemented.

The regulations, which take effect immediately, will be fine-tuned if need be after a period of time, the paper cited an unnamed State Council official in charge of the law as saying.

Even if a proposed business combination falls below the specified turnover threshold, government agencies should examine whether the resulting market share of the companies involved would be so large as to lead to a possible monopoly, the official said.