On 14 January 2014, China's Ministry of Commerce (MOFCOM) conditionally approved the US$13.6 billion acquisition of Life Technologies Corporation by Thermo Fisher Scientific Inc. One of the more complicated transactions reviewed by MOFCOM to date, the regulator's published decision reveals a highly structured and sophisticated competitive analysis bringing greater transparency to its processes and methods. Notably, the decision provides important insight into MOFCOM's use of certain economic tools and in that respect the case represents a significant development in the regulator's decisional practice.

This legal update looks at key aspects of the case.

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