Saturday, November 27

Google loses the lawsuit against the European Union and will have to pay the 2,400 million of its first fine for abuse of dominant position

Google lose the last bullet he had left to avoid paying the 2,420 million euros with which the European Commission decided to fine them for the first time in 2017. They were accused of abusing their dominant position in the internet search market and favoring their Google Shopping service over rivals.

Google did not agree with the fine and went to the European Justice to issue a sentence. Now the General Court of European Justice has published its resolution, endorsing the fine to Google.


Justice endorses the first historical fine against Google

The court dismisses the appeal filed by Google and Alphabet and maintains the fine imposed by the Commission. Due to this, they will have to pay the 2,420 million euros of fine, of which 523 million are the responsibility of the parent company.

This is a victory for Margrethe Vestager’s team and the Competition Commission of the European Commission. The Justice recognizes the anti-competitive nature of the practice that Google carried out and explains that “it favored its own price comparison service on its general results pages through more visualization and favorable positioning, while relegating the results of the services of the competition on those pages using ranking algorithms. ” In summary, the General Court understands that “Google favored its own comparison service over the competition, rather than giving the best results“.

The ruling indicates that Google has not shown that its practices have offered gains in the market that offset the negative effects on competition.

It is not the only fine that Google has received from the European Commission. This is the first historical fine, but in 2018 they were a total of 4,340 million euros for Android and in 2019 they were 1,490 million euros for AdSense. In June 2021, the European Union reported that he initiated a fourth investigation. For the moment, Justice has endorsed the first of them. We will have to wait to know what it decides about the others.

Google could still appeal this decision. From Google they explain that “this opinion is about very specific facts and Although we are going to look at it in great detail, we already made changes in 2017 to comply with the decision of the European Commission. These changes have worked successfully, generating 1 billion clicks for more than 700 price comparison services. ”

More information | CURIA

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