The European Commission, by voice of Executive Vice-President Margrethe Vestager, announced the opening of an investigation against Amazon.

The European Commission has informed Amazon of its preliminary opinion that it has infringed EU antitrust rules by distorting competition in online shopping.

In particular, the Commission disputes that Amazon is systematically based on non-public business data from independent sellers selling on its marketplace.

The Commission considers that the Commission’s decision to initiate the procedure is not in line with the principle of proportionality.

The Commission also initiated a second formal antitrust investigation into the possible preferential treatment of Amazon’s retail offers and those of the sellers on the market using Amazon’s logistics and delivery services.

Executive Vice President Margrethe Vestager, responsible for competition policy, said: □ We must ensure that double-role platforms with market power, such as Amazon, do not distort competition. The Commission considers that the Commission’s assessment of the compatibility of the measures with the internal market is not sufficient to assess the compatibility of the measures with the internal market. The conditions of competition on the Amazon platform must also be fair. The Commission considers that the Commission’s decision to initiate the procedure for the application of the contested decision is not in line with the Commission’s decision to initiate the procedure laid down in Article 107 (3) (c) of the Treaty. With the booming e-commerce and Amazon is the main e-commerce platform, fair and undistorted access to online consumers is important for all sellers.

Although it is only a preliminary and interlocutory step, Jeff Bezos’ company is certainly not too relaxed: the maximum penalty for this type of violations can reach up to 10% of the total turnover.

Amazon’s response

In response to the European Commission’s statements, Amazon states that \ We do not agree with the European Commission’s preliminary statements and will continue to work to ensure a thorough understanding of the facts. Amazon represents less than 0.2% of the global retail market and there are larger retailers in all the countries where we operate. No company more than Amazon deals with small businesses or has done more to support them in the last two decades. There are more than 150,000 European companies selling through our stores, which generate tens of billions of euros of revenue each year and have created hundreds of thousands of jobs.

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