Putting it mildly, Asia Pacific business historically has lacked enthusiasm for competition and antitrust regulation.
"Antitrust laws are simply not ingrained in the culture and are in fact contrary to the way business people have operated in this part of the world," says Marc Waha, a competition partner at Norton Rose. "If you look at the success of the Asian tigers in the '80s and '90s, you'll see that much of their success was built on joint ventures and cartels and the like."
Japan and the Philippines were the first to adopt antitrust laws, part of their 1950s legacy from the American occupation under Gen. Douglas MacArthur. But the governments did little to enforce the laws in any meaningful way.