Turkey fines Google $36.6M for abusing its dominant position

Turkey’s competition watchdog on Wednesday handed down TL 296 million (over $36.6 million) in fine to Google for abusing its dominant position in the search engine services area.

In a statement, the Competiton Authority (RK) said Google had provided advantages to its own accommodation price comparison and its local search services over its competitors.

In addition to the fine, it said Google must ensure within six months that competitors are not disadvantaged and it must report to the board every year for five years about the issue.

The investigation included Turkish Google Reklamcılık ve Pazarlama Ltd., Google International LLC, Google LLC, Google Ireland Ltd., and Alphabet, Google's parent company.

The authority in November last year also slapped Google with TL 196.7 million ($25.6 million) fine.

The board ruled at the time that Google breached the law by complicating organic search results in the content services market by placing text ads intensively and uncertainly at the top of the general search results.

In February, the authority had fined Google TL 98 million for abusing its dominant market position.

In March 2019, the European Commission also slapped a $1.69 billion fine on Google for breaching the European Union's anti-trust rules on online advertising.

Meanwhile, decisions taken by the authority throughout 2020 were recognized by the world's leading antitrust and competition law journal and news service, Global Competition Review (GCR), placing the country in the midst of the world's best candidates.

In particular, the fines issued by the RK that targeted Google enabled it to be nominated for the "Best Competition Decision of the Year.”

(c) Daily Sabah


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