Japanese regulators to propose withdrawing carrier antitrust exemption
The Japan Fair Trade Commission (JFTC) is expected to propose that the country’s transport ministry withdraw antitrust immunity for liner carriers, according to a June 16 Financial Times news report.
The action follows similar moves taken by other country regulators in the past year, including the European Commission and Singapore. The United States limited many aspects of the liner carriers’ antitrust immunity in the 1998 Ocean Shipping Reform Act.
FT reported that Japan’s three liner carriers — NYK, Mitsui O.S.K., and “K” Line — are resisting any change to their rate-setting privileges.
“The Japanese shipping industry’s trade body is opposed to any moves to end the exemption, and its members are understood to be pressing the JFTC to delay any decision indefinitely,” the newspaper said. “Lobbyists for shipping lines believe the transport ministry will reject the JFTC’s request.”