Google faces €3bn fine over shopping service

Google faces a record antitrust fine of about €3bn euros (£2.4bn) from the European commission in the coming weeks, the Sunday Telegraph has said.

The European Union has accused Google of promoting its shopping service in internet searches at the expense of rival offerings in a case that has dragged on since late 2010.

Several people familiar with the matter told Reuters last month they believed that after three failed attempts at a compromise in the past six years Google now had no more plans to try to deal with the allegations unless the EU changed its stance.

The Telegraph cited sources close to the situation as saying officials planned to announce the fine as early as next month, but that the bill had not yet been finalised. Google will also be banned from continuing to manipulate search results to favour itself and harm rivals, the newspaper said.

The commission can fine firms up to 10% of their annual sales, which in Google’s case would be a maximum possible sanction of more than €6bn. The biggest antitrust fine to date was a €1.1bn fine imposed on chip-maker Intel in 2009.

The commission and Google both declined to comment.

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