European Commission aims to reach deal on antitrust laws by end of March

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The European Commission is aiming to reach a fast-tracked deal with EU lawmakers to rein in the power of tech giants like Apple, Amazon, and Meta by the end of March.

Margrethe Vestager, who first proposed the Digital Markets Act, said that there has been good progress in negotiations and said the Commission is aiming to reach "political agreement" by the end of March, Reuters has reported.

"If we manage that, that will be legislation with almost the speed of lightning," she said at a European Parliament hearing.

The Digital Markets Act would end self-preferencing by tech giants in the European Union. It was introduced back in 2020 alongside the Digital Services Act, which would address illegal or harmful content by urging platforms to moderate them in a prompt matter.

Both pieces of legislation carry severe penalties for companies that don't comply. However, their progress in the European Union has been snarled by lawmaker infighting and parliamentary dustups.

Apple has vocally opposed the antitrust legislation. Back in 2021, Apple CEO Tim Cook said that the proposals could threaten the security and privacy of Apple's iPhone, among others platforms.

However, the EU is pressing forward with its competition rules. EU lawmakers previously said they could reach a deal on the legislation by the end of June 2022.