On 16 August 2023, the Saudi Arabia General Authority for Competition (GAC) announced that it will conduct a comprehensive investigation into the automotive sector.
On 16 August 2023, the Saudi Arabia General Authority for Competition (GAC) announced that it will conduct a comprehensive investigation into the automotive sector. This was prompted by conduct of companies active in the Saudi automotive section that came to the attention of the GAC. During an initial market investigation the GAC found evidence of potential violations of the Saudi Competition Law, which they now decided to further investigate.
Earlier this year GAC initiated an initial investigation into the automotive market in Saudi Arabia after they became aware of suspicious conducted in the market. This initial investigation comprised the markets for spare parts and after sale services as well as related supply chains. Initially the GAC sought to understand how these markets are structure and how conduct of undertakings active in these markets may impact competition in Saudi Arabia. To support the investigation team the GAC involved several third party experts to aid in this initial investigation.
During this initial investigation the GAC discovered potential violations of the Saudi Competition Law in the markets for automotive spare parts and after sales services. These findings prompted the GAC to expand their investigation, which lead to their opening an in depth investigation into the Saudi automotive market in mid August. It remains to be seen what measures will be applied by GAC in their investigation. Considering prior investigations conducted by the GAC, we expect that they will soon commence a Q&A procedure. Once this is completed they may issue more individual requests to individual businesses.
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