Russia’s competition authority said on Tuesday it would fine US tech giant Apple for violating Russian antitrust laws and abusing its dominant position in the App Store market.
The federal Anti-Monopoly Service (FAS) said it would impose a turnover-based penalty against Apple, the size of which will be determined during an administrative investigation.
Moscow has long objected to the influence of foreign tech platforms in the Russian market, but the controversy has escalated since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine in February.
“The company has abused its dominant position in the iOS app distribution market,” FAS said in a statement.
“Apple prohibits iOS app developers from telling customers inside the app the possibility to pay for purchases outside the App Store or to use alternative payment methods.”
Apple did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Moscow has fined Western firms for violating internet laws, which critics say is an attempt by the Kremlin to exert more control over the online space.
They include rules for storing customer data on Russian servers, deleting content at the request of Russia’s communications regulator, and opening local offices in the country.
The decision to go against Apple on antitrust grounds echoes the European Commission’s high-profile finding of the company, which it called a “closed ecosystem” that “wrongly shields” Apple from competition.
After initially fining firms in the tens or hundreds of thousands, Russia is increasing its financial penalties significantly. On Monday, Russia fined Google $370 million, which it says was repeatedly denied to remove content.
(This story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)