27 June 2017
Commenting on the fact that Google has been fined 2.42bn euros (£2.1bn) by the European Commission after it ruled the company had abused its power by promoting its own shopping comparison service at the top of search results, Molly Scott Cato MEP, Green Party economics spokesperson, said:
“Rightly, the European Commission has come down heavily on one of the world’s most powerful corporations, which has been using its size and influence to achieve unfair competition. Attempts by Google to use its domination of the Search arena to favour its shopping comparison service represents a damaging extension of its monopoly power that must be resisted. The action by Commissioner Vestager is a good example of how the EU member states can act collectively to clamp down on corporate power; action an individual country may not feel able or willing to do on its own.
“Given previous scandals involving Google avoiding taxes in the UK and the powerlessness of tax authorities to tackle this , we must also remain focused on the risk that post-Brexit Britain will become a tax haven for corporations like Google.”
Molly Scott Cato went on to say:
“We also need the EU to stand up for digital start-ups that challenge the might of US digital monopolies and remain vigilant to prevent them using their market power to create barriers to entry.”