1. What are the penalty regulations for businesses engaging in conduct likely to lead to competition restrictions in violation of Article 20 of the Fair Trade Act?
As specified in Article 20 of the Fair Trade Act, “No enterprise shall engage in any of the following acts that is likely to restrain competition: 1) causing another enterprise to discontinue supply, purchase or other business transactions with a particular enterprise for the purpose of injuring such particular enterprise; 2) treating another enterprise discriminatively without justification; 3) preventing competitors from participating or engaging in competition by inducement with low price, or other improper means; 4) causing another enterprise to refrain from competing in price, or to take part in a merger, concerted action, or vertical restriction by coercion, inducement with interest, or other improper means; 5) imposing improper restrictions on its trading counterparts’ business activity as part of the requirements for trade engagement.”
As set forth in Article 36 of the Fair Trade Act, “If any enterprise violating the provisions of Article 19 or Article 20 is ordered by the competent authority pursuant to paragraph 1 of Article 40 to cease therefrom, rectify its conduct, or take necessary corrective action within the time prescribed in the order, and after the lapse of such period, shall such enterprise fail to cease therefrom, rectify such conduct, or take necessary corrective action, or after its ceasing therefrom, shall such enterprise have the same or similar violation again, the actor shall be punished by imprisonment for not more than two years or detention, or by a fine of not more than fifty million New Taiwan Dollars, or by both.” Meanwhile, it is also stipulated in Paragraph 1 of Article 40 of the Fair Trade Act that the competent authority may order any enterprise that violates Article 9, Article 15, Article 19 and Article 20 to cease therefrom, rectify its conduct or take necessary corrective action within the time prescribed in the order; in addition, it may assess upon such enterprise an administrative penalty of not less than one hundred thousand nor more than fifty million New Taiwan Dollars. Shall such enterprise fail to cease therefrom, rectify the conduct or take any necessary corrective action after the lapse of the prescribed period, the competent authority may continue to order such enterprise to cease therefrom, rectify the conduct or take any necessary corrective action within the time prescribed in the order, and each time may successively assess thereupon an administrative penalty of not less than two hundred thousand nor more than one hundred million New Taiwan Dollars until its ceasing therefrom, rectifying its conduct or taking the necessary corrective action.
Relevant article(s) of law: Fair Trade Act, Articles 20, 36 and 40