EU to Google: Antitrust proposals are 'not enough'; demands more

EU to Google: Antitrust proposals are 'not enough'; demands more

Summary: The Brussels-based bureaucrats are hinting at the possibility of massive fines on deck if Google can't move quickly on alleviating concerns by the European officials.

TOPICS: Google
EU Competition Commissioner Joaquin Almunia (Image: European Union)

Google's relationship with Apple may have improved over the past year or so, despite rivalries over their respective platforms and partnerships.

But the arms-length affair with Brussels is far from where it should be. And Google should be prioritizing the latter over the former, considering what the European officials could hand down in its final antitrust verdict.

Read this

Google faces partial ban in Europe if antitrust talks crash

Google faces partial ban in Europe if antitrust talks crash

The search giant may face difficult times ahead if it doesn't solve its European antitrust matters now, such as having parts of its business blocked in the 28 member state bloc.

At a news conference with journalists, EU Competition Commissioner Joaquin Almunia confirmed that he has asked Google once again to allay concerns that its dominant position in the search market isn't harming its competitors and rivals, Reuters reports.

The proposals the search giant submitted in April in a bid to end a three-year investigation are "not enough" to overcome the EU's concerns, Almunia said.

"I wrote a letter to Google, to [Google's executive chairman Eric Schmidt], asking Google to present better proposals, to improve its proposal," he confirmed.

A few weeks earlier, Google's general counsel said the search giant had done a "pretty good job" in addressing the European Commission's concerns over anticompetitive practices in the region.

Following Google's submission of settlement proposals in a bid to avoid massive fines in the region, the Commission sent out the proposals to rivals affected by Google's alleged behavior. Those rivals reportedly were not pleased with Google's settlement conditions, leading to the EU's concerns today.

Google faces a fine of up to 10 percent of its global annual turnover for infringing years. In total, that could amount to €2.9 billion ($3.8bn) based on the company's 2011 global revenue.

Topic: Google

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  • I am no great lover

    of Google or their ilk but they are necessary. I do admire the EU's ability to fine the sh@t out of any business that attempts to overstep their 'legal' bounds but how much farther will they go in the name of anti-trust? Fine Google.. or even Yahoo for that matter because they dominate the search market? Yea, Google may be =evil= but why stifle competition; even if on a global scale? I do not think you can compare the EU's quick work of M$ and Google. Maybe I'm a +noob+ but where does the buck stop in the never-ending witch hunt of legitimate business in the EU? Someone help me here...
    • It's never good enough!

      Compliance is never sufficiently met when it is enacted/enforced by anti-capitalist tyrants.
      David A. Pimentel
    • Agreed but... No great lover of Brussels Bureaucrats

      Nothing good seems to come from the incredibly inflated and self centered folks who are the Bureaucrats of Brussels. Look no further than those folks for why the EU is virtually a complete failure. It is only their great desire for power and control that is keeping the EU afloat along of course with the help of Germany and a bit from France and of course England (who are having problems of their own on the bureaucratic side but at least were smart enough to keep some distance from the dip sh*ts in Brussels. As for Google... Microsoft or any organization of that size (this includes of course Apple) I am no lover of any company whose goal is to control everything so I guess in that respect some cudos might be (tongue in cheek) in order for the self centered bureacrats of Brussels.
  • EC should back down

    and stop the harasment on behalf of the axis of evil software.
    LlNUX Geek
  • Google needs to change

    Google business practices are illegal. They are thieves in suits. Thank EU for standing up against them. In US, the current administration is turning a blind eye on Google's business practices and tax evasion tactics.
    • Good

      point . . .
    • Owlnet, always the "I hate Google" mouthpiece. no justification required.

      Who for some reason constantly backs a twice convicted monopolist.

      Nobody has yet explained to me how google hurts others when search is a personal choice, it requires no one to install anything, it works with any browser and there is no lock in at all. exactly the opposite of what Microsoft got busted for. If you don't like Google search, use something else. lots of people do.
      • cont

        Because Google is popular in Europe, they should be forced to give free ads to their competitors? how exactly does that make any sense at all?

        My feeling is that the EU needs money so they are finding it anyway they can. Of course if you ask Microsoft if they like the settlement they will say no. The only settlement they'd like to see is to have Google redirect to Bing.

        Losing respect for the EU hand over first... wonder how many people got paid off to reach this wonderful conclusion.. probably the same number it took to get openXML and its ilk declared ISO standards.
        • oh. and microsoft and apple use the same tax processes as Google.

          And nothing illegal about any of them has been found. Governments need to follow their own laws or change them if they have left to many loop holes. Blaming publicly listed companies for trying to maximize profits for their share holders so just silly in the extreme.
  • xxx

    And if Google did not exist who would claim these companies, which must be recognized is that this company has done well and been visible to many businesses, organizations, and institutions organism without this powerful tool, not the total would reach population of users who possess today, so there is no right to be treated in this way.
    Andres Arcesio Torres Cano