Published: Wed, March 14, 2018
Hi-Tech | By Ellis Neal

France to sue Apple and Google for abusive practices

France to sue Apple and Google for abusive practices

France will file a lawsuit against USA tech giants Google and Apple for "abusive commercial practices", which include unilaterally imposing contractual terms on startups and developers, the country's economy minister said on Wednesday.

Apple and Google face legal action at the Paris commercial court that could result in a fine of Euro 2 million for unfair commercial practices.

The proposal was aimed at tech giants, like Google and Facebook, with revenues above 750 million euros ($928 million) worldwide and with digital revenues in the European Union of at least 10 million euros in a tax year.

"I learned that when developers develop their applications, and sell to Google and Apple, their prices are imposed, Google and Apple take all their data, Google and Apple can unilaterally rewrite their contracts", Le Maire said in an interview with RTL radio.

The French finance minister has announced plans to sue Google and Apple for "abusive trade practices".

Representatives for Apple and Google couldn't immediately be reached for comment.

France has had a complicated relationship with Internet giants. Le Maire has always been a critic of tech firms, calling for the taxation of tech companies revenue rather than their profit and has argued that these tech firms use loopholes and safe havens to pay very little tax in countries that they're based in.

He added the current action could result in penalties reaching several million euros. "When our developers want to sell their app on Google or Apple, the fees are imposed on them", Mr. Le Maire said.

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