US President Donald Trump says the billion-Euro fine handed to Google yesterday proves the EU is 'taking advantage' of the US.
The European Commission handed down the €4.34bn sanction yesterday, accusing the tech giant of imposing illegal restrictions on Android device manufacturers to "cement its dominant position" in internet search.
Announcing the fine yesterday, European Competition Commissioner Margrethe Vestager said Google's business practices have "denied rivals the chance to innovate and compete on the merits."
She said European consumers were being denied the "benefits of effective competition" and noted that "this is illegal under EU antitrust rules."
European Competition Commissioner Margrethe Vestager
In a tweet this afternoon, US President Donald Trump said the sanctions backed his claims that the EU was 'taking advantage' of the US.
I told you so! The European Union just slapped a Five Billion Dollar fine on one of our great companies, Google. They truly have taken advantage of the U.S., but not for long!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 19, 2018
In an interview with CBS News last week President Trump said the US had "a lot of foes" - with the EU top of the list.
"I think the European Union is a foe, what they do to us in trade. Now you wouldn't think of the European Union but they're a foe," he said.
"In a trade sense, they've really taken advantage of us.
"Many of those countries are in NATO and they weren't paying their bills and, you know, as an example [I have] a big problem with Germany."
Handing down the fine yesterday, the European Commission singled out Google's demand that manufacturers pre-install the Google Search app and Chrome browser before it grants them a licence for the Google app store.
It also accused the company of paying large manufacturers and operators to exclusively pre-install the Google Search app on their devices.
It said Google was blocking manufacturers who wished to pre-install Google apps from selling ay devices that run on alternative version of Android, not approved by Google.