On 7 July 2017, the National Legislative Assembly published the Trade Competition Act, 2560 B.E. (2017) (“the TCA”) in the Royal Gazette, for the purpose of efficient enforcement of the law. The TCA will become effective in October 2017.
Keywords: Mazars, Thailand, Legal, TCA, Royal Gazette, OTCC
11 August 2017
The main issue that this amendment addresses is the regulation of mergers. The TCA states that merging companies must take the following actions:
Requesting approval before a merger – Any merger that may lead to a monopoly or to becoming a dominant operator in the market requires pre-approval from the Office of Trade Competition Commission (“OTCC”).
Requesting notification after a merger – The OTCC must be notified of any merger that may significantly reduce competition in the market within seven days of the date of the merger.
The TCA also clarifies the scope of unfair trade practices. The following trade practices are forbidden:
- Price fixing and setting unfair commercial terms;
- Controlling the manufacturing or servicing capacity of another business operator;
- Rigging bids; and
- Allocating goods and services by territory.
However, business operators that are related parties in terms of control or policy may be exempt from such restrictions.
The TCA defines more clearly terms such as ‘market’, ‘market dominance’, and ‘dominant operator in the market’, as well as clarifying various sanctions and penalties.