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Dissertation zugänglich unter
Comparative Analysis of Merger Control Policy - Lessons for China
Vergleichende Analyse der Fusionskontrollpolitik
Dokument 1.pdf (3.516 KB)
Freie Schlagwörter (Englisch):
Competition Law , China , Merger Control , Competition goals
European Doctorate in Law & Economics (EDLE)
Thomas Eger (Prof. Dr.)
Tag der mündlichen Prüfung:
Kurzfassung auf Englisch:
After thirteen years of discussion, the Anti-Monopoly Law of the People’s Republic of China was promulgated on 30 August 2007 and this law entered into force in August 2008. During the legislative process, a particular challenge was to determine the goal of competition law in China.
This challenge can be best illustrated by the merger control policy under the Chinese Anti-Monopoly Law, which has been formulated by incorporating economic goals as well as various social and political considerations.
This dissertation investigates to what extent competition goals may affect merger policy by taking a comparative perspective. This central research question has been discussed in four chapters. After the introduction, in the second chapter, the legislative history of the Chinese Anti-Monopoly Law and merger policy has been presented, in order to explain why competition law and policy in China incorporates a multitude of policy goals. In the third chapter, a particular attention has been paid to the debate on competition goals in the US and the EU. The evolution of the antitrust debate shows that in the US, competition goals focus on economic goals, in particular consumer welfare and total welfare, whereas social and moral judgments on antitrust conduct have been largely dismissed. In the EU, competition policy is utilized to achieve broader goals of the European Union, and economic goals have to be balanced with other non-economic goals. Another finding in the third chapter is that throughout the evolution of the debate on competition goals, the development of economic theory has played an important role in shaping the understanding of competition law. In line with the development of modern economic techniques, economic goals have gradually been accepted by judges, legislators and policy makers in the US and the EU. This finding can be further strengthened in the fourth chapter which investigates the evolution of incorporating the efficiency goal in merger policy. In both the US and the EU, efficiency arguments have been treated with much less hostile today than decades ago. By following the theoretical debate on competition goals in the third and the fourth chapter, the fifth chapter addresses the issue of the extent to which competition goals may affect merger analysis. Taking economic theories and modern economic techniques as the benchmark, this chapter shows that the divergent competition goals in the US, the EU and China may lead to a different outcome of merger cases.
The main contribution of this research is to understand the differences between merger policy in China, the US and the EU from a perspective of competition goals. The ultimate goal of this research is to draw lessons for competition policy makers in China by learning from the experiences in the US and the EU. After the investigation of antitrust goals and their impacts on merger cases, there are two lessons that can be drawn: Firstly, competition policy makers in China may learn from the evolution of competition goals in the US and the EU concerning moving forward from political goals to economic goals, at the same time switching the focus from producers to consumers. The second implication is that, as was shown in both the US and the EU, to improve the merger decisions in China, on the one hand economic analysis should be strengthened in merger decisions, and on the other hand it will be important to invite economists to join the investigation team and to train specialized staff by establishing research centers and by promoting competition culture.