In this overview, we outline some of the main developments in Indian competition law and policy in 2020 and indicate what may lie “around the corner” in 2021.
The Response to COVID-19
Shortly after the start of the pandemic, India was placed under a tight lockdown. This impacted the ability of the Competition Commission of India (CCI) to conduct its business and by the end of March it suspended its enforcement work and declined to accept new combination notifications. In this context, it swiftly introduced measures for the electronic filing of combination notifications in the Green Channel (see under Merger Control, below) and stated that it would endeavour to process existing merger cases. In mid-April, the CCI stated that it would “endeavour to process new and pending cases subject to the availability of necessary information and material” and complaints of anti-competitive agreements and abuse of dominance could be filed electronically. Merger notifications could also be filed electronically and pre-filing consultations could take place by videoconference. The CCI also issued an important Advisory on competitor coordination addressing the effects of COVID-19 (see under Anti- Competitive Agreements, below).
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