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Foreign carmakers cut prices amid monopoly probe  

跨国车企降价“回应”反垄断调查 或引豪车降价潮

2014-08-06 13:16 Ecns.cn Web Editor: Gu Liping

(ECNS) -- US luxury carmaker Chrysler announced on Tuesday that it would cut prices of some cars and spare parts by an average of 20 percent in response to China's anti-monopoly probe.

The announcement made Chrysler the fourth overseas automaker, after Jaguar Land Rover, Audi and Mercedes-Benz, to cut prices in the wake of the ongoing investigation by China's anti-monopoly regulator.

Domestic media said that antitrust investigations of Chrysler and Audi, conducted respectively by the Shanghai Municipal Development and Reform Commission and the Hubei Bureau of Price Supervision, would soon come to an end.

Insiders said that monopoly practices by the companies in China had been confirmed, and that cutting prices would not help them avoid penalties.

Mercedes-Benz confirmed on the same day that it had been investigated by anti-monopoly officials in China and that it would cooperate with authorities.

Insiders worried that the price cutting by foreign brands may impact the domestic auto market. Shen Jinjun, executive vice-chairman of the China Automobile Dealers Association, disagreed however, saying the probe would benefit everyone, as it would force companies to behave better.

The National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) made it clear this February that it would investigate foreign brands' anticompetitive behavior in the auto industry. The NDRC is one of several Chinese government bodies that investigate violations of the country's anti-monopoly law. It is responsible for doing so from a pricing perspective.

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