India court docket orders antitrust physique to rule on Amazon-Future dispute inside two weeks


NEW DELHI (Reuters) – An Indian court docket dominated on Tuesday that the nation’s antitrust physique has two weeks to determine whether or not Amazon misled authorities whereas searching for approval for a 2019 take care of India’s Future Group, a bunch of Indian retailers mentioned.

The Confederation of All India Merchants (CAIT) mentioned in a press release it had filed the case to the Delhi Excessive Courtroom on Monday and the ruling was made on Tuesday.

Amazon and Future, India’s second-largest retailer, have been locked in a authorized battle since final yr. The e-commerce large efficiently blocked Future’s bid to promote its retail property to rival Reliance for $3.4 billion, accusing its companion of breaching some pre-existing agreements.

Future, which denies any wrongdoing and fears liquidation if it fails to promote property, has been arguing earlier than the Competitors Fee of India (CCI) that approval for the 2019 Amazon deal needs to be revoked because the U.S. agency had made deceptive representations whereas searching for approval. Amazon has mentioned it’s assured of addressing such regulatory issues.

On Tuesday, the CAIT mentioned the antitrust physique mustn’t delay deciding on the matter, which has ramifications for the general public curiosity and will hit their companies if the Future-Reliance deal fails.

A two-judge panel mentioned the CCI should determine on the dispute between Amazon and Future inside two weeks, the retailer group mentioned in its assertion, including that “merchants shouldn’t be made a scapegoat or undergo any monetary loss.”

The CCI and Amazon didn’t reply to a request for remark.

On the coronary heart of the 2 corporations’ authorized dispute is Amazon’s deal to take a position $200 million in Future Coupons, a unit of Future Group, in 2019.

One particular person aware of the case mentioned on Tuesday it will be unprecedented for the CCI to outrightly revoke a deal even when there was misrepresentations, however any resolution may have an effect on the continuing dispute.

“If there is no (2019) transaction, there is no dispute between Amazon, Future,” mentioned the supply, who requested to not be recognized as a result of the particular person was not authorised to talk to the media.

In July, Reuters solely reported that the CCI had reviewed a grievance from Future after which accused Amazon of concealing information whereas searching for approval to put money into a Future Group unit in 2019, after the watchdog in contrast authorized disclosures made by Amazon at a number of boards.

Amazon advised Reuters on the time that it was assured of addressing the watchdog’s issues.

(Reporting by Aditya Kalra and Abhirup Roy; Modifying by Ana Nicolaci da Costa)

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