A week after media reports that China was investigating an automaker’s alleged “monopolistic” behavior, China imposed a fine of $29 million on Shanghai General Motors for breaching anti-monopoly guidelines.
The Shanghai Price Bureau stated Friday that Shanghai GM, the United States car manufacturer’s venture with state-owned Shanghai Automotive Industries, incorrectly suppressed competition by imposing minimum prices dealerships were allowed to charge for Cadillac, Chevrolet and Buick.
Shanghai GM, of which General Motors owns 49% and SAIC holds 51%, is the automaker’s biggest joint venture in China. GM is not the first western car manufacturer to face this type of sanction. Fiat Chrysler and Audi dealt with similar fines in an industry-wide investigation that started in 2014 following complaints auto buyers were being overcharged. Few Japanese automobile parts suppliers likewise were fined on price-fixing charges.
“GM fully appreciates local laws and guidelines any place we run,” the company stated. “We will give complete assistance to our joint venture in China to ensure that responsive and suitable actions are taken with respect to this matter.”
The sanction against General Motors came in the wake of the event associated with President-elect Donald Trump about U.S. relations with China. Earlier this week the Trump transition team revealed Peter Navarro would lead a recently created nationwide trade council.
Peter Navarro, 67, a professor at the University of California-Irvine and a critic of China’s trade policy with the United States, having called China the world’s “most efficient assassin” and a “totally totalitarian” state.