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Indian Regulator Uses Reuters As Evidence In Amazon Probe

 |  March 19, 2021

India’s antitrust body on Friday, March 19, told a court that a Reuters report showing Amazon gave preferential treatment to a small group of sellers on its India platform corroborated evidence it had received and which had triggered an investigation of the US e-commerce giant.

The Competition Commission of India (CCI) announced in January 2020 that it was investigating Amazon and Walmart Inc’s Flipkart following a complaint from a trader group that they were promoting preferred sellers. But the probe into alleged violations of competition law was put on hold as the two firms mounted a court challenge.

While arguing on Friday for restarting the probe, Madhavi Goradia Divan, an Additional Solicitor General of India representing the CCI, read parts of the Reuters report to the judge in the Karnataka High Court, saying it “corroborates what was said” in the original complaint.

The Reuters story, which was published last month, was based on internal Amazon documents dated between 2012 and 2019. It revealed that Amazon for years helped a small number of sellers prosper on its platform, giving them discounted fees and helping one cut special deals with big tech manufacturers.