The European Union filed new anti-trust charges against Google on Thursday, piling pressure on the US tech giant over the alleged abuse of its market dominance.
Brussels targeted the Silicon Valley firm’s advertising business, saying it had restricted some websites from displaying ads from Google’s competitors.
The EU also beefed up its charge sheet in an earlier case against Google which alleges that the firm abused the dominance of its search engine for online shopping.
There are now three EU cases against Google in total, with the EU having also filed charges in April against it for its Android mobile phone operating system.
‘Dominance is not a problem under EU law, you can be big,’ EU Competition Commissioner Margrethe Vestager told a news conference in Brussels.
‘However, it is illegal to abuse a powerful market position by restricting competition.’
Google now has 10 weeks to respond to the complaint.
In the meantime, a Google spokesperson offered a general defence against the charges from the European Commission, the executive of the 28-nation European Union.
‘We believe that our innovations and product improvements have increased choice for European consumers and promote competition,’ the spokesperson told.
‘We’ll examine the Commission’s renewed cases and provide a detailed response in the coming weeks.’
Former Danish economy minister Vestager has launched a series of EU anti-trust cases against US firms in the past two years, drawing complaints from Washington.
Other EU investigations include cases against Starbucks, Amazon and McDonald’s.