Apple fined $667K in Taiwan for fair trade violation

Summary:It is accused of interfering in the pricing and mobile phone payment rates of three local telcos for iPhones, despite selling them the distribution rights.

Apple has been fined TW$20 million (US$667,000) for violating Taiwanese fair trade laws by inteferring with how telcos price the iPhone.

Local telcos Chunghwa Telecom, Far Eastone Telecommunication and Taiwan Mobile had submitted their pricing plans to Apple for approval or confirmation before launch, according to Taiwan's Fair Trade Commission in its statement. The U.S. tech giant had reportedly also asked the carriers to adjust their prices.

Apple fined $667,000 in Taiwan for fair trade violation.

The regulator accused Apple of restricting competition by depriving telcos the liberty of deciding prices based on their own cost structures and market situation.

Apple can choose to appeal the ruling, or face an addtional fine of up to TW$50 million (US$1.6 million) if it does not comply with the regulator's warnings to stop its "illegal actions".

The company has also faced anticompetition complaints in Europe , where it has been probed for its distribution practices, including preferential treatment toward larger carriers.

The U.S. tech giant was under the spotlight in Taiwan last month for including the island under China in its new maps app. It amended the labeling within a week of outcry from the Taiwanese government.

Topics: Legal, Apple, iPhone, Smartphones


Loves caption contests, leisurely strolls along supermarket aisles and watching How It's Made. Ryan has covered finance, politics, tech and sports for TV, radio and print. He is also co-author of best seller "Profit from the Panic". Ryan is an editor at ZDNet's Asia/Singapore office.

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