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The OIP welcomes the CJEU’s decision to uphold Google’s €4.125 billion fine for abuse of dominant position on Android

The OIP welcomes the CJEU's decision to uphold Google's €4.125 billion fine for abuse of dominant position on Android

« But fines must not become provisional taxes on abuse of dominance! »

The European association Open Internet Project (OIP) welcomes the decision of the Court of Justice of the European Union, which confirmed on 14 September 2022 that Google had indeed abused its dominant position, as the European Commission had ruled in the Android case back in 2018, following various complaints filed with the Commission, including OIP’s.

The Commission rightly considered that Google was imposing illegal restrictions on Android device manufacturers in order to promote the use of its own search engine. Google was thus using its Android operating system to maintain the dominant position of its search engine. Moreover, in its decision, the CJEU notices that Google does not contest that the pre-installation of a search engine on an Android phone is ” likely to improve the results of the search services concerned”, which confirms that Google abused its dominant position to deny its competitors the possibility to improve their service, in detriment of consumers’ interest.

« I am satisfied with this decision, but I want to remind you that this decision comes 7 years after the beginning of the procedure, a procedure that is not finished, because both parties can still appeal. It has been 7 years since Google abused its dominant position on Android, trying to block alternatives, such as Qwant, one of the founding members of our association, from offering their services to European users. The only way to stop Google's anti-competitive practices from the beginning would have been to pronounce interim measures. But the current wording of the legislation governing the use of these services has not allowed the Commission to do so. For the past 7 years, we have been lobbying for the standards of interim measures to be readjusted so that they can be used by the Commission, as we can see there is no other way to dissuade Google from increasing its anticompetitive behavior! »
says Léonidas Kalogeropoulos
General Delegate of the OIP
« It is time for a change in the standard of interim measures! We see in the consultation on Regulation 1/2003 on the EU antitrust rules a real opportunity to change the wording, so that the word "irreparable" damage is replaced by "immediate" damage. Imposing a fine, whether it is a record or not, on a tech giant, and we have been observing this for more than 13 years now, is unfortunately useless because the fines become a provisioned tax on the abuse of a dominant position! For the year 2021 Google (Alphabet) alone had a $76 billion net profit: Alphabet could therefore have paid 18 times this €4.125 billion fine, while remaining productive. But requiring this same giant to cease practices judged to be anti-competitive within a short period of time would finally tip the balance in favor of healthy and balanced competition, which is so necessary for virtuous European players.»
says Quentin Adam
CEO of Clever Cloud and President of the OIP


Léonidas Kalogeropoulos, Délégué Général : +33607315126 –

Anaïs Strauss, Chargée de mission :+33757503010 –

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