Supreme Court Docket hands Trump Triumph in China Anti Trust case

0
© Reuters. Supreme Court hands Trump win in China antitrust case© Reuters. Supreme Court hands Trump win in China antitrust case

By Andrew Chung

WASHINGTON – The U.S. Supreme Court sided with the Trump administration and against China on Thursday on a disputed aspect of their fraught trade relationship, throwing out a lower court ruling that had allowed two Chinese vitamin C makers to escape $148 million in damages for violating American antitrust law.

In a case that brought the trade conflict between the world’s two largest economies before the top U.S. court, the justices ruled 9-0 that the lower court gave too much deference to Chinese government filings in the case explaining China’s regulatory policy.

The justices sent the case back for reconsideration by the New York-based 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, which in 2016 threw out the damages won by two American vitamin C buyers.

Writing for the court, Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg wrote that while U.S. courts should give “respectful consideration” to a foreign government’s interpretation of its own law, they are not “bound to accord conclusive effect to the foreign government’s statements.”

Lawyers for the U.S. and Chinese governments faced off in April before the justices. The Supreme Court took the unusual step of letting China present arguments even though it is not an official party in the case, a privilege typically reserved for the U.S. Justice Department.

The price-fixing case dates back to 2005 when Texas-based Animal Science Products Inc and New Jersey-based The Ranis Co Inc accused Hebei Welcome Pharmaceutical and North China Pharmaceutical Group and other Chinese vitamin C makers of antitrust violations.

China intervened in the case, asking the trial court to dismiss the allegations in part because its laws had forced Chinese companies to comply with government-mandated pricing regimes.

A U.S. federal judge questioned the credibility of the Chinese submissions and, after a 2013 jury trial, awarded the two American companies $147.8 million in damages.

The New York-based 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals overturned the judgment in 2016, saying that when a foreign government directly participates in a case American courts are obligated to defer to that country’s characterization of its own laws.

Disclaimer: Fusion Media would like to remind you that the data contained in this website is not necessarily real-time nor accurate. All CFDs (stocks, indexes, futures) and Forex prices are not provided by exchanges but rather by market makers, and so prices may not be accurate and may differ from the actual market price, meaning prices are indicative and not appropriate for trading purposes. Therefore Fusion Media doesn`t bear any responsibility for any trading losses you might incur as a result of using this data.

Fusion Media or anyone involved with Fusion Media will not accept any liability for loss or damage as a result of reliance on the information including data, quotes, charts and buy/sell signals contained within this website. Please be fully informed regarding the risks and costs associated with trading the financial markets, it is one of the riskiest investment forms possible.