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Japan to seek up to 20% fine for monopolistic practices by Apple

New Japanese laws could slap Apple with up to 20% sales penalty

Japan is poised to dramatically increase the penalties for tech giants accused of monopolistic practices like Apple.

In an extensive global effort to limit the power of major technology companies, the Japanese government plans to revise its antitrust regulations. The strategy could lead to fines for anti-competitive activities such as unfairly restricting access to app markets, potentially increasing to 20% of pertinent sales.

Similar actions have been undertaken in other regions, including the European Union.

Japan's new proposal amplifies the current penalties, which cap 6% of sales, signaling the country's commitment to enforcing competitive practices in the digital economy. Its adjustment aligns with actions seen in other regions, including the European Union, according to Nikkei Asia.

The backdrop of Japan's regulatory shift is a series of international debates and legal challenges focusing on the business practices of major tech companies. Apple, in particular, has been at the center of these discussions.

Japan made its intentions known to impose fines on Apple in December. The purpose is to ensure that companies like Apple and Google don't favor their services or products unfairly.

Similar to the EU, the forthcoming Japanese regulations, mobile platform operators must permit alternatives to their app stores and payment systems, facilitating a more open digital market. The change is designed to dismantle the barriers favoring incumbent platforms over smaller developers and competitors.

For those who persist in anti-competitive conduct, the fines could escalate to a staggering 30% of sales. This underscores the severity of the new policy and its determination to combat continuous anti-competitive behavior.

Japan's proposal might catalyze further regulatory reforms worldwide as countries reassess their approaches to digital market monopolies. The Fair Trade Commission plans to provide a comprehensive draft of the proposal to legislative groups, including the economy and industry unit of the ruling Liberal Democratic Party.

The commission intends to introduce the bill to parliament within a few weeks.