March 6, 2013
Japan Fair Trade Commission
Mr. Kazuyuki Sugimoto takes office as the Chairman of the Japan Fair Trade Commission (“JFTC”) following the investiture ceremony held yesterday.
“This time, I assume the position of the Chairman of the Japan Fair Trade Commission and I am keenly aware of the significant responsibility to be at the helm of the appropriate management of competition policy in Japan,” Mr. Sugimoto says.
“The recent economic environments surrounding our country are changing drastically and facing difficult conditions. Against the backdrop, it makes all the more important that JFTC carries its mission to promote fair and free competition, thereby, vitalizing our economy and protecting consumer welfare.”
He emphasizes the following thoughts on his taking office:
Rigorous and effective law enforcement
“It is important that the JFTC is committed to ensure rigorous and efficient enforcement of the Antimonopoly Act. Strict law enforcement against violations of the Antimonopoly Act leads to encouraging Japanese economy as well as contributing to consumer benefit. Thus, the JFTC must continue stringently and actively countering price-fixing cartels and bid-rigging which have a serious impact on the lives of people. Meanwhile, the JFTC will pursue appropriate and swift reviews of mergers and acquisitions.”
Enhancement of competitive environment
“It is essential to further fair and free competition that enterprises autonomously engage in competitive business activities, in addition to the rigorous law enforcement by the JFTC against unlawful conducts. In this context, the JFTC also makes more efforts to enhance competition environment such as the promotion of corporate compliance culture with the Antimonopoly Act...”
Promotion of international cooperation
“With rapidly globalizing economy and increased cross-border business activities…, more and more needs are emerging to cooperate and coordinate with overseas competition authorities in enforcement arena, particularly for addressing international cartels and mergers. Besides the field of law enforcement, promotion of international liaison with overseas competition authorities through various cooperation frameworks, bilateral or multilateral, is becoming an important issue. The JFTC needs to make contributions to these agendas that are expected as Japanese competition authority.”
Mr. Sugimoto, who was most recently Chairman of Mizuho Research Institute Ltd., was registered as an attorney. He also has experience in teaching economic and fiscal policies as a professor at Graduate School of Public Policy, the University of Tokyo.
He served as a government official for more than thirty years and spent most of his career in the Ministry of Finance until he resigned as Administrative Vice Minister of Finance in July 2009. Under the Yoshiro Mori cabinet, from 2000 to 2001, he was assigned as a Senior Advisor to the Prime Minister.
He graduated from the University of Tokyo (LL.B.) and the University of Cambridge (M.A.).