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Google faces antitrust probes in India

Source : PTI
Last Updated: Thu, Oct 31, 2013 06:49 hrs
Google

Google Inc. is facing probes by fair trade regulators in India, Europe and three other jurisdictions for alleged anti-competitive practices. Competition authorities in Argentina, Brazil and Taiwan have also opened investigations into certain aspects of Google's business, according to the company.

Fair trade watchdogs have the mandate to keep a check on anti-competitive business practices across sectors.

"The Comision Nacional de Defensa de la Competencia in Argentina, the Competition Commission of India, the Taiwan Fair Trade Commission and Brazil's Council for Economic Defence have also opened investigations into certain business practices of ours," the company said in a recent regulatory filing.

The Competition Commission of India (CCI) began its probe in August last year. In India, Google accounts for over 90% of the Internet search market. "...As far as I recall, the allegation or the complaint was that their (Google) search engine is such that it is discriminatory and it favours the platforms which Google wants to support. "That is when you click on Google under a certain category, you will get the platforms where there is a tendency to put them in a certain order which may not be the fair and non-discriminatory manner. So, what is the software and what is the algorithmic search, (that is) what the investigation team is looking at," CCI chairman Ashok Chawla said recently.

Meanwhile, in its filing, Google also said it was pursuing a potential resolution with the European Commission's (EC's) Director General of Competition, which is probing various antitrust related complaints against the company.

"We believe we have adequately responded to all of the allegations made against us. We continue to cooperate with the EC and are pursuing a potential resolution that would avoid a finding of infringement and a fine," it said.

Besides, European Commission has opened an investigation into Motorola's licensing practices for standards-essential patents and use of standards-essential patents in litigation following complaints by Microsoft and Apple.

"The European Commission has issued a statement of objections against Motorola alleging abuse of a dominant position with respect to these standards-essential patents. We have responded to the statement of objections and are defending the case," the filing said.

Also, state attorneys general from Texas, Ohio and Mississippi have also issued civil investigative demands relating to the company's business practices.

"We are cooperating with the state attorneys general and are responding to their information requests on an ongoing basis," it added.


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