Google has been facing the wrath of the European Commission for the past 5 odd years, as it is currently investigating three outstanding anti-trust issues against the tech behemoth. The commission believes that the company is abusing its widespread market power, but, is still not extending its inspection into Google’s tax deals with national authorities across the Europe. You ask why!?
Margrethe Vestager, the commission’s anti-trust chief firstly apologizes for the slow pace of resolution of these cases against Google. She then goes on to add that the commission hasn’t received any formal complaints against the Mountain View-based giant’s operations in the country. In conversation with Reuters, she said, “So far, no, we have nothing formal on that one[Google tax deals].”
However, earlier this year, the Scottish National Party had reportedly sent a complaint letter to the European Commission. In the letter, they had addressed their concerns regarding Google’s £130 million($160 million) back tax deal with British tax authorities. The same was criticized and discarded by British politicians over the dismal tax amount.
On the other hand, the commision has already ordered Cupertino giant Apple Inc. to fess up 13 billion euros(or $14.5 billion) in unpaid taxes to Ireland.
Vestager further adds that the commission is currently focused on analysing the pending allegations and wants the shopping case to be water-tight. In the shopping case, Google has been accused of favoring its own comparison-shopping service over those of rivals in the search results. This case, whose deadline has recently been extended, has dragged on since 2010 — when the first formal investigation into Google began.
I am as sorry as you and everyone else that antitrust work is taking a lot of time.
But it is also a sign that this is a case that is building in its strength as well as a case which is of course strictly following our procedures to make sure that also here we build up the rule of law.
she told the European lawmakers.
In addition, the company has also been alleged of wrongly abusing the power of its Android operating system to strong-arm manufacturers to pre-install its search engine and browser app on their smartphones. It has also been charged with blocking rivals in online search advertising and preventing publishers from displaying ads from other ad platforms.
If Google is unable to prove its innocence in any of these cases, the commision has already warned the company to be ready to pay a hefty sum of money. According to several reports, the commission is looking to break Google’s monopoly and fines are expected to much heavy than the previous estimate of $3.4 billion. The company has been provided until 31st October to file its final rebuttals against the allegations.