Skip Navigation
Select Matters

KFTC Clears Local Fruit Fumigant Manufacturer of Alleged Abuse of Dominance and Unfair Trade Practices


On December 27, 2021, the Korea Fair Trade Commission ("KFTC") closed, without imposing sanctions, its investigation against a local fruit fumigant manufacturer (“respondent”) regarding its alleged abuse of dominance and unfair trade practices that are prohibited under the Monopoly Regulation and Fair Trade Law.  The investigation was prompted by a complaint filed by several competitors (“complainants”) who claimed that the respondent abused its dominance and superior bargaining position in the fruit fumigant market to (i) discriminate against companies that were planning on doing business with the complainants by supplying products at unreasonably high or low prices, (ii) demand that those companies do not transact with the complainants or that they meet certain conditions in order to receive the respondent’s products, and (iii) make it difficult for the complainants to pursue their business activities by unduly filing a lawsuit seeking damages.  In closing its investigation, the KFTC issued a "no violation" decision for several of the allegations.

This is the first case in which the KFTC reviewed the specific factors for assessing abuse of dominance and unfair trade practices in the market for fumigant chemicals that are used to prevent pests during inspection of imported fruit (e.g., bananas).  Throughout the KFTC’s extensive investigation, which lasted for about two years, Kim & Chang collected a large volume of evidentiary materials and conducted an in-depth legal analysis to develop a definitive argument against the complainant’s allegations, and thereby successfully persuaded the KFTC to clear the respondent of the allegations.