On Wednesday, the European Union’s General Court ruled in favour of the European Union in that it was right to fine Google for breaching antitrust regulations. The ruling gives the European Union some form of upper hand over the seemingly formidable tech players.
The ruling follows the European Union’s executive arm’s statement that Google had favoured its comparison shopping services and a 2.42 billion euros fine the tech giant received for breaching antitrust regulations. Google didn’t take the decision quite well and decided to contest the claim using the European Union’s second-highest court.
A press release by the European court on Wednesday reads “The General Court finds that, by favouring its own comparison shopping service on its general results pages through more favourable display and positioning, while relegating the results from competing for comparison services in those pages by means of ranking algorithms, Google departed from competition on the merits”.
“The General Court concludes its analysis by finding that the amount of the pecuniary penalty imposed on Google must be confirmed”, the court added confirming the 2.42 euros fine.
While the European Union and Google are yet to give an official statement, it is pertinent to know that Google can decide to appeal the verdict by taking it to the European Union’s highest court.
In July 2020, after the European Union ordered the Republic of Ireland to recoup 13 billion euros from Apple in 2016, the European Union failed to prove that the Irish Government had given a tax advantage to Apple. This is therefore not the first time that there has been such an antitrust brawl that had been taken to court for decision. This time, Google seems to be on the losing end.
The ruling of the European Union court comes at a time when the EU is taking steps to tighten its rules and ensure that fairer competition exists across all member states.