Beijing launches antitrust probe into online titan Alibaba

Alibaba faces legal action over counterfeit goods

Beijing has launched an antitrust investigation into ecommerce titan Alibaba as part of a crackdown on monopolistic behaviour in China’s booming online market.

Regulators had previously warned Alibaba about the so-called “choosing one from two” practice, under which sellers are required to sign exclusive deals preventing them from selling goods through other marketplaces.

China’s State Administration for Market Regulation (SAMR) said on Thursday it has now launched an official investigation.

Financial regulators will also summon representatives from Alibaba’s fintech affiliate, Ant Group, in the coming days. They said that meeting would be designed “to implement financial supervision, fair competition and protect the legitimate rights and interests of consumers”.

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