Microsoft has been targeted by some Chinese IT companies for suspected monopoly activities and will likely face the first anti-monopoly lawsuit in China, Beijing Business Today reported Thursday.
Several domestic IT companies who compete with Microsoft have been studying China's first anti-monopoly law, which goes into effect tomorrow, waiting for the right time to file a lawsuit against the U.S. software giant.
Cao Can, the general manager of a domestic office software producer, publicly appealed to file the first anti-monopoly lawsuit against Microsoft, aiming to send a signal to all other multinational corporations that conduct monopoly activities in the Chinese market.
Sources with Kingsoft, a major Chinese software company that has dealt with Microsoft for more than 20 years, told the newspaper that the company's law department is researching the new anti-monopoly law and discussing whether or not to file a formal lawsuit against Microsoft.
Some IT companies noted that Microsoft undoubtedly holds a monopoly in the Chinese market based on the anti-monopoly law. They will therefore "bring Microsoft to court no matter if they would win or lose," a deputy manager of a local software company told the newspaper.
Despite the determination in the IT industry to pursue the lawsuit, some domestic law practitioners expressed concerns.
Yao Kefeng, a well-known lawyer in China, said that the details of the current anti-monopoly law still need improving.
Based on international norms, it usually takes years to end an anti-monopoly lawsuit. And even if the Chinese companies could win this case in court, they might have lost their opportunity to turn things around in the real market.
Netscape, for example, lost its leading marketplace in the Internet browser market to Microsoft after the latter was convicted on monopoly charges.
For more details, please read the full story in Chinese:
(China.org.cn by Yan Pei, July 31, 2008)