S&Ds welcomed today the decision of the European Commission to impose a €4.3 billion penalty on Google for abusing its dominant position in the Android operating system for mobile phones.
The European Commission has fined Google €4.34 billion for breaching EU antitrust rules. Since 2011, Google has imposed illegal restrictions on Android device manufacturers and mobile network operators to cement its dominant position in general internet search.
– A document from 10 November 2017 on the preparation for the trilogue has been made public.
The Commission adopted a proposal for a regulation on promoting fairness and transparency for business users of online intermediation services on 26 May 2018. Providers of online intermediation services (e.g. Amazon and eBay) and online search engines (e.g. Google search) are required to implement a set of measures to ensure transparency and fairness in the contractual relations they have with online businesses (e.g. online retailers, hotels and restaurants businesses, app stores) which use such online platforms to sell and provide their services to customers in the EU. The proposal is still at an early stage in consideration in the European Parliament, where it has been assigned to the IMCO committee.
Latvia has announced its intention to join the EuroHPC Joint Undertaking, and participate in and contribute to European and national efforts to acquire, build and deploy in Europe the world’s most powerful supercomputers.
The EU and Japan successfully concluded today their talks on reciprocal adequacy. They agreed to recognise each other’s data protection systems as ‘equivalent’, which will allow data to flow safely between the EU and Japan.
There is a consensus that the digital economy is relatively undertaxed when compared with traditional businesses. Certain inherent characteristics such as reliance on cross-border provision of services without physical presence, easy transfers of intangible assets, and novel ways to create value make it particularly easy for enterprises to limit their tax liabilities. In order to provide a solution to this problem, in March 2018 the Commission adopted the ‘fair taxation of the digital economy’ package, comprised of two proposals. One concerns a permanent reform of corporate tax regime while the second is a proposal for a directive on the common system of a digital services tax on revenues resulting from the provision of certain digital services, which would apply as an interim measure until the permanent reform has been implemented. The tax is to cover businesses above two thresholds: total annual worldwide revenues exceeding €750 million and annual revenues in the EU exceeding €50 million. The proposed single rate is at 3 %, levied on gross revenues resulting from the provision of certain digital services where user value creation is essential. The stakeholders and the Member States seem to be divided on the issue.
Informal meeting of competitiveness ministers takes place in Viennaunder the motto “Rethinking European Industry” with focus oninnovation, digitalisation, artificial intelligence and professional education.