Investigation Into Local Search Services: Competition Authority Decides To İmpose A Fine Of TRY 428 Million On Google For The Period Of Non-Compliance With The Recommendations For Action

Competition Law

According to the press release of the Competition Authority ("Authority") dated 10 June 2002, Google has been fined TRY 428 million in accordance with the decision of the Competition Board ("Board").

In its decision of 08.04.2021, number 21-20/248-105, the Competition Board found that Google has a dominant position on the market for general search services and that Google has infringed Article 6 of Law no. 4054 by giving its local search (Local Unit) and accommodation price comparison (Google Hotel Ads-GHA) services an advantage over its competitors in terms of position and display on the general search results page and by preventing competing local search sites from entering the Local Unit, thereby hindering the activities of competitors and distorting competition in the local search and accommodation price comparison services markets. Google was found to have violated Article 6 of Law No. 4054 and an administrative fine of TRY 296,084,899.49 was imposed on Google.

The Commission also imposed certain obligations on Google in order to bring the infringement to an end and to ensure that effective competition is restored in the market. In this context, Google was required to make available competing local search services and competing accommodation price comparison services on terms that did not discriminate against Google's own relevant services on the general search results page. Subsequently, at the Board meeting on 21 March, it was decided to implement the measures proposed by Google and to monitor them for a period of 3 months.

However, having found that Google had not fully complied with the above obligations, the Board decided to impose an administrative fine on Google, pursuant to Article 17 of Law 4054 on the Protection of Competition, for each day until the implementation of the new designs for the local search service for hotel queries.

Accordingly, the Board decided to terminate the daily administrative fine as of 21.05.2024 and to impose a total administrative fine of approximately TRY 482 million on Google as a sanction for failing to implement the new designs regarding local search services in relation to hotel queries.

You can access the full text of the Authortiy’s press release here.


Kind regards,

Zümbül Attorneys- at -Law