China’s economic planning agency has handed the local unit of New York-listed Medtronic, a medical equipment firm, a fine of 118.5 million yuan ($17mn) for price-fixing, a fresh penalty against foreign businesses on the mainland as Beijing flexes its muscle against monopolies, The South China Morning Post reports. The fine is the first in the medical device industry and showed the teeth of the National Development and Reform Commission, tasked with policing the pricing of companies and issuing fines under the nation’s anti-monopoly law, which came into effect in 2008. Early last year, the commission fined US telecoms equipment maker Qualcomm 6.08 billion yuan – the largest business fine issued yet on the mainland. The fines have drawn accusations that Beijing is using the law to target foreign companies, a claim the government denies.
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