Q7. Discuss the role of the Competition Commission of India in containing the abuse of dominant position by the Multi-National Corporations in India. Refer to the recent decisions. (10m)
You can start by writing about what CCI is along with its recent decisions: The Competition Commission of India (CCI) is the statutory authority established in 2009 responsible for enforcing competition law in India. It has taken a number of decisions in recent years against MNCs for abusing their dominant position in India. For example:
- In 2023, the CCI fined WhatsApp wrt its user privacy policies.
- In 2022, the CCI imposed a fine on Google for abusing its dominant position wrt its Play Store policies.
- In 2021, Amazon was fined for abusing its dominant position in the online retail market in India.
You can start with the Role of CCI in containing the abuse of dominant position by the MNCs followed by the challenges:
- Investigation: The CCI can investigate MNCs that engage in anti-competitive practices, such as price fixing, bid rigging, and market division.
- Imposition of penalties: CCI can impose penalties, which acts as a deterrent against anti-competitive behaviour.
- Review of Mergers and Acquisitions: CCI reviews mergers and acquisitions involving MNCs to ensure they do not cause adverse impact on competition in the market.
- Ensures fair competition: by encouraging new entrants and preventing the abuse of dominant position by MNCs.
- Consumer awareness: CCI educates consumers about their rights and encourages them to report any anti-competitive practices that they encounter.
However, CCI faces certain challenges while dealing with MNCs, which include:
- Adapting to Digitization: Understanding technological nuances in the digital era.
- Lack of Specialised Expertise: to deal with technology and modern industrial economics.
- Resource deficit: Limited number of benches and staff hindering the speedy disposal of competition cases.
- Overlap with Other Regulators: Coordinating with other regulatory bodies in sectors like telecom and technology.
- Digital Market Definitions: Developing new definitions for digital technologies and addressing emerging issues like data protection and privacy, platform neutrality, and more.
Here you can mention a suitable legislation on lines of which CCI can be improved:
Although CCI has been proactive to check anti-competitive practices of the MNCs, it must be provided more powers on lines of the European Digital Markets Act to ensure fair and just competition in the market.
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