US retail giant Amazon and EU anti-trust authorities have reached a deal on the American company's sale of e-books. The firm will no longer force publishers to disclose information about their contracts with rivals.
The European Commission announced Thursday that Amazon had accepted Brussels' demands and agreed to drop clauses requiring e-book publishers to disclose information about their deals with the retail giant's rivals.
In a move to avoid potentially hefty fines, Amazon "will no longer enforce or introduce these clauses in agreements with publishers," the EU executive said in a statement.
"These clauses may have led to less choice, less innovation and higher prices for consumers due to less overall competition in the EU," it added.
All sides pleased?
EU Competition Commissioner Margrethe Vestager said fair competition was required on the European market for e-books having a volume of 1 billion euros ($1.09 billion).
In a battle dating back to 2015, the EU argued that Amazon's contracts with e-book publishers violated the bloc's anti-trust laws, because publishers were required to reveal their other deals, with Amazon compelling them to grant it equal or better terms than they offered to rivals.
The retail giant said in a statement it was pleased to have reached an agreement with the Commission.
The e-books-related quarrel ends as Amazon is fighting a far bigger anti-trust case with Brussels over its tax affairs in Luxembourg.
hg/sri (AFP, Reuters)