‘One-size-fits-all approach’ does not work for digital markets, says CCI Chairperson


PTI, Jan 3, 2021, 12:48 PM IST

New Delhi: Amid concerns about possible unfair business ways in the growing digital space, Competition Commission Chairperson Ashok Kumar Gupta has said that a ”one-size-fits-all” approach does not work for digital markets and a nuanced assessment of cases based on facts is the need of the hour.

Competition Commission of India (CCI) has been closely watching digital markets and also came out with a detailed study on e-commerce space, among other initiatives.

Owing to their innate features such as network effects and data-driven complementarities, digital markets typically yield high concentration and are often ”winner-take-all markets”, Gupta opined and acknowledged that concerns and implications of anti-competitive conduct get amplified in this context.

”The strength of network effects and consequent lock-ins for consumers differ from one market and one product to another. A one-size-fits-all approach does not work.

”A nuanced assessment, based on the facts of the case and the market and technology in question is the need of the hour. The Indian anti-trust law allows for the much-needed flexibility within a broad framework as the statutory framework is robust enough,” Gupta told PTI in a recent e-mail interview.

Like any other competition authority, he said the challenge for the CCI is to ensure that these concentrated digital markets remain open to new entrants and that competition on and between the digital platforms is on the merits.

This has become all the more important during the pandemic as the integration of businesses with the digital mode is extremely important, he emphasised. Among the studies being done or proposed by the fair trade watchdog is an ongoing one on mergers and acquisitions in the digital market to understand the emerging trends.

According to Gupta, the study will also look at those mergers and acquisitions in the digital space that might have escaped the CCI’s scrutiny owing to their asset/ turnover falling below the stipulated thresholds. Under the Competition Act, deals beyond certain thresholds require the approval of the CCI.

When asked about his thoughts on digital companies gathering huge data and at times, emerging as a kind of monopolies that affect other competitors, Gupta said the regulator is cognizant of the fast-evolving digital markets and role of Big Data in the gig economy. Elaborating, he noted that from a competition law perspective, data as a resource is a key element in the digital economy and is a significant metric in assessing market power of the firms.

”Data and, more specifically, the knowledge extracted from data are a source of a significant competitive advantage, which may work in favour of large incumbent platforms. The concern arises when large digital firms reinforce and exploit this data advantage through anti-competitive means,” he noted.

He said that in case such firms leverage the data controlled in some markets to achieve enhanced power in other markets, or discriminate in giving access to data to attempt to exclude a viable competitor, that may be a cause of concern requiring examination under the Competition Act, 2002.

”Further, if consumers value privacy, then, large collection of data may be analogue to a reduction in the quality of the service provided and/ or imposition of unfair condition which can be seen in competition law terms as an exploitative conduct,” he added.

Udayavani is now on Telegram. Click here to join our channel and stay updated with the latest news.

Top News

Exit polls predict clear win for Aam Aadmi Party in Delhi municipal polls

Gujarat polls: 59 pc turnout till 5 pm on 93 Assembly seats in Phase 2; PM, Shah cast votes

Largest cargo aircraft Beluga lands in Hyderabad Airport

Exit polls predict big majority for BJP in Gujarat, edge in HP

Karnataka State SSLC Board Exams 2023 schedule announced

Delhi govt bans plying of BS-III petrol, BS-IV diesel four-wheelers

Symptoms of long Covid in children may change over time: Lancet study


Related Articles More

India’s services sector output growth hits 3-month high in Nov on strong demand

UAE emerges second biggest tea importer from India after CIS bloc

Adani group’s NDTV open offer subscribed 32%; poised to be largest shareholder

RBI likely to moderate interest hike: Experts

Mcap of eight of top-10 most valued firms climb Rs 1.15 lakh cr; Reliance biggest winner

MUST WATCH

Rishab shetty family visit Anegudde temple

Do you know what makes a beagle dog special?

How to become flipper

Bannur Sheep Breed Information | Uv

This rare jackfruit tree Sidddu Halasu


Latest Additions

Udupi: Youth, who moved to Dubai for studies, passes away

Nexus Malls ropes in Amitabh Bachchan as its ‘Happyness Ambassador’

Croatia beats Japan 3-1 in penalty shootout at World Cup

Neymar scores, Brazil beats South Korea 4-1 at World Cup

Exit polls predict clear win for Aam Aadmi Party in Delhi municipal polls

Thanks for visiting Udayavani

You seem to have an Ad Blocker on.
To continue reading, please turn it off or whitelist Udayavani.