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South Korea: Concerns over “excessive” antitrust probes arise

 |  August 22, 2018

According to the Korean Times, a growing number of businesses are expressing concerns about the nation’s antitrust agency’s decision to give up its exclusive rights to file complaints about antitrust cases, which it will now share with Ministry of Justice prosecutors.

The companies are worried that the power sharing between the South Korea Fair Trade Commission (KFTC) and prosecutors will lead to more antitrust investigations. Business owners think the two will compete to grab headlines by initiating more probes.

According to the agreement made between the KFTC and the Ministry of Justice, the prosecution can now also investigate major corporate antitrust cases without the KFTC filing a complaint. However, the KFTC will maintain its exclusive right over minor cases.

Though the KFTC said the move will “balance law enforcement and promote a healthy market economy,” companies and business groups say they now have “two grim reapers” they should look out for.

“The KFTC giving up of its exclusive rights does not mean it will not look into companies. It means we are now under the scope of both the KFTC and the prosecution and the chance of a company being investigated will become greater,” said a conglomerate official who refused to be named.

Full Content: The Korea Times
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