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Tencent’s dominance in music industry under spotlight as China continues to regulate big tech

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By Shawn Lim | Reporter, Asia Pacific

July 26, 2021 | 4 min read

Tencent has been banned from signing any exclusive music copyright agreements in the future because of anti-competitive practices.

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Tencent holds more than 80% of exclusive music library resources after its acquisitions

The State Administration Of Market Regulation (SAMR) said it had investigated Tencent’s activities in China’s online music broadcasting platform market and fined the company for unfair market practices when acquiring China Music Corporation.

It said Tencent and its subsidiaries including Tencent Music Entertainment Group, the unit created from the acquisition, must not engage in exclusive copyright agreements with upstream owners of such rights, while existing agreements must be terminated within 30 days of the regulatory notice.

The SAMR also fined Tencent 500,000 yuan ($77,150). It had previously blocked Tencent’s plans to merge China’s top two videogame streaming sites, Huya and DouYu, on anti-trust grounds.

Why is this happening to Tencent?

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