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Google Caves to Russian Antitrust Regulators

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Google finally caved to Russia’s Federal Antimonopoly Service this week, agreeing to pay 438 million rubles ($7.8 million) for violating antitrust laws. Google will also pay two other fines for failing to comply with past orders by state regulators, totaling an additional 1 million rubles ($18,000).

Last August, responding to a complaint by Yandex (Google’s main competitor in Russia), the Federal Antimonopoly Service fined the U.S. company 438 million rubles for abusing its dominant market position to force manufacturers to make Google applications the default services on devices using Android. Regulators set the fine at 9 percent of Google’s reported profits on the Russian market in 2014, plus inflation.

Google challenged the penalty in several appellate courts before finally agreeing this week to meet the government’s demands. The company also agreed to stop requiring manufacturers to install Google services as the default applications on Android-powered devices.

The agreement is valid for six years and nine months, Russia’s Antimonopoly Service reported.

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