China keeps Microsoft’s Nokia takeover under microscope

China’s top commerce watchdog is taking a more prudent approach than usual to granting approval for US ms_nokiasoftware giant Microsoft Corp’s takeover of mobile telephone business from Finland-based Nokia, Beijing-based newspaper The Economic Observer reported on 21 December 2013.

Such acquisitions usually get approval from China’s Ministry of Commerce after a 30-day first-phase investigation.

But currently, the deal has not been approved yet and is undergoing a second-phase anti-trust investigation, though regulators from some other countries and regions including the US have given the nod already, the report said, citing unnamed sources familiar with the matter.

The sources attributed the ministry’s careful moves mainly to requests from domestic mobile phone manufacturers, including ZTE, Lenovo and Xiaomi, who fear that upon the completion of the transaction, Nokia will charge them high patent fees for the usage of valuable technology on handsets.

Read more: Global Times

One Comment on “China keeps Microsoft’s Nokia takeover under microscope”

  1. Lets be clear if China wants to turn back the clock on freetrade and resort to protectionism, that’s one thing, but it shouldn’t use ‘anti-trust’ as the excuse to do it…as there are NO anti-trust issues involved in this transaction. Nokia will be out of the handset business altogether after this deal, so where is the monopolistic concerns that antitrust addresses? It doesn’t exist here. Even now, nokia’s share of the china market has fallen to around 2%, so its ludicrous to cite antitrust. Whether or not a company enforces its intellectual property in court is an entirely unrelated issue, and china has its own IP laws just like everyone else, so nokia would need to go thru Chinese courts for any enforcement in future. Is china denying foreign companies impartial access to its laws now?

    With approvals already given by virtually all other countries in the world…what this shows is that China has no room to play around on this issue. Everyone knows there are NO antitrust issues, any finding otherwise by the Chinese Commerce regulators would only indicate Chinese incompetence and corruption to domestic special interest, an embarrassment China cannot afford if seeks great power status

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