Exclusive: EU antitrust regulators may narrow Amazon investigation – sources

In this news, we discuss the Exclusive: EU antitrust regulators may narrow Amazon investigation – sources.

BRUSSELS (Reuters) – EU antitrust regulators may narrow the scope of their year-long investigation into Amazon AMZN.O to speed up the lawsuit against the US e-commerce giant, people told Reuters close to the file.

The Amazon split could respond to complaints from rivals that antitrust authorities are taking too long to remedy the damage caused to them by anti-competitive practices and that rulings are failing to keep pace with changing market trends. markets.

EU regulators have adopted a similar tactic against Alphabet Inc.’s GOOGL.O Google by first addressing complaints about its price comparison service and then opening investigations in other areas of its business.

The European Commission opened an investigation into Amazon in July 2019, focusing on whether its dual role as a marketplace for traders and as a competitor selling the same products could give it an unfair advantage.

The survey also examines the role of data in selecting Amazon “Buy Box” winners who appear to the right of product pages saying “Buy Now” or “Add to Cart” and who generate about 80% of sales.

However, the EU competition official is now considering separating the two issues to focus on one, which will make it easier to move the case forward, one of the people told Reuters.

“The data case looks weaker,” the person said, adding that no final decision has been made on whether to split the case, or which angle to focus on first.

The European Commission declined to comment.

The sources also said there was a debate over whether the case should be considered under antitrust regulations designed to combat anti-competitive agreements such as cartels, or under rules designed to prevent anti-competitive deals. companies to abuse their market power.

Reporting by Foo Yun Chee; Edited by Philip Blenkinsop and David Clarke

Original © Thomson Reuters

Originally posted 2020-10-14 10:16:09.

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