EU regulators have brought a third antitrust charge against Alphabet Inc’s Google, accusing it of blocking rivals in online search advertising, a move that raises the pressure on the company to modify its practices or face hefty fines.
The European Commission on Thursday also reinforced an existing charge against the world’s most popular Internet search engine that its search results favor Google’s own shopping service over those of rivals.
“Google has come up with many innovative products that have made a difference to our lives. But that doesn’t give Google the right to deny other companies the chance to compete and innovate,” European Competition Commissioner Margrethe Vestager told a news conference in Brussels.
The Commission said it had sent two charge sheets known as “statements of objections” to Google….
The EU’s pursuit of Google, along with probes into other U.S. multinationals over tax issues and control of personal data, has caused irritation in Washington, with President Barack Obama last year accusing Europe of veering toward protectionism.