Antitrust regulator orders Tencent Music to waive rights to music labels

Photo illustration of the Tencent Music Entertainment (TME) logo, a Chinese company that develops music streaming services.

Pavlo Gonchar | SOPA Pictures | LightRocket via Getty Images

The Chinese competition regulator has ordered Tencent to give up its exclusive music license rights and fine the company for anti-competitive behavior, as Beijing continues to crack down on its internet giants in its country.

The State Administration for Market Regulation (SAMR) on Saturday fined the company 500,000 yuan ($ 77,141) for violating its acquisition of China Music in 2016.

As a result of this acquisition, Tencent owns more than 80% of the exclusive resources of the music library, which gives the company an advantage over its competitors as it is able to enter into more exclusive agreements with the rights holders. author, SAMR said in a statement.

The competition watchdog has ordered Tencent and its subsidiaries to ensure fair competition by relinquishing its exclusive music rights within 30 days, and to end copyright owners’ demands to grant to the company better terms than their competitors, such as high prepayments.

Tencent will report to SAMR on its progress every year for three years, the statement said, and the antitrust regulator will strictly oversee its implementation in accordance with the law.

In response, Tencent said it would abide by the regulator’s decision and “comply with all regulatory requirements, fulfill our social responsibilities and contribute to healthy competition in the market.”

It comes as Beijing continues to crack down on its domestic tech companies that have become some of the most valuable companies in the world. The crackdown in recent months has ranged from Ant Group’s $ 34.5 billion IPO suspended last year at $ 2.8 billion antitrust fine imposed on Alibaba.

In April, SAMR summoned 34 companies including Tencent and ByteDance, and ordered them to conduct self-inspections in order to comply with anti-monopoly rules.

This is last minute news. Please check for updates.

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