Google could pay a staggering 3 billion euros over monopoly charges in Europe, a new report claims.
The search engine giant has been under investigation in Europe for seven years over allegations that it abused its dominant position in the market. The Telegraph reports that the European Commission now plans to “hit Google with a fine in the region” of 3 billion euros, which would be the EU’s largest anti-trust punishment ever. The EU previously targeted Intel with a 1.1 billion euro fine.
The report reads:
“Sources close to the situation said officials aimed to make an announcement before the summer break and could make their move as early as next month, although cautioned that Google's bill for crushing competition online had not been finalised.”
According to European Commission regulations, the maximum possible fine that could be levied upon Google is 6.6 billion euros – that’s a tenth of the company’s annual turnover. However, the Telegraph reports that this maximum is unlikely, at least according to its sources.
The European Commission may also force Google to change its search practices to fall in line with European law, including halting favouritism of its own services over competitors on search.
It’s also worth noting that Google is also facing separate charges regarding the company’s Android operating system, which could result in further fines. You can read all about this in our EU vs Google explainer.
Google has the opportunity to dispute any proposed fine in the European Court of Justice, although the company has not publicly confirmed plans to do so.
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Do you think Google has acted improperly? Let us know in the comments.