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CCI Initiates Market Study on AI Amidst Growing Antitrust Concerns

 |  March 5, 2024

The Competition Commission of India (CCI) is gearing up to delve into the realm of Artificial Intelligence (AI) with a forthcoming market study, announced by the regulator’s chief, Ravneet Kaur, on Tuesday. With AI applications proliferating across various sectors, the CCI aims to comprehend the potential antitrust issues arising from its widespread adoption.

Speaking at the 9th conference on Economics of Competition law, Kaur articulated the commission’s intentions, stating, “We will shortly commence a market study on artificial intelligence to develop a comprehensive understanding of the evolving landscape of AI and AI use cases in markets in India, which could inform the strategies of the commission aimed at fostering innovation and fair competition.”

This initiative follows Kaur’s earlier announcement in January regarding the commission’s plans to solicit bids for a study on AI’s impact on businesses and services. The primary objective is to ensure that the regulatory framework keeps pace with technological advancements and fosters a level playing field for businesses.

In August 2023, CCI had released draft regulations pertaining to commitment and settlement provisions under competition law, aiming to expedite market corrections. Furthering this agenda, Kaur emphasized the impending issuance of regulations on Settlement & Commitment, alongside guidelines for monetary penalties.

Read more: Google Accuses India’s Competition Commission of Protecting Amazon

The mandate of the CCI extends beyond curbing unfair business practices; it also includes the promotion of fair competition in the marketplace across sectors. As digital markets continue to evolve, Kaur highlighted the necessity of bolstering the CCI’s institutional capacity to effectively address emerging challenges.

To this end, the Commission has established a dedicated Digital Markets and Data Unit, tasked with serving as a specialized interdisciplinary center of expertise. This unit will focus on digital markets within the commission, addressing the nuanced complexities associated with these rapidly evolving domains.

Kaur underscored the growing importance of economic analysis and evidence in competition law enforcement across jurisdictions. She emphasized the need for continual adaptation and enhancement of regulatory mechanisms to address evolving market dynamics effectively.

As AI permeates various facets of the economy, the CCI’s proactive approach towards understanding its implications underscores the regulator’s commitment to maintaining fair competition and fostering innovation in India’s marketplace.