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  • you.

  • Competition commissioner Makary Divest Anger has long been a thorn in the side of the likes of Apple, Alphabet and Facebook.

  • Now, she says, her proposals will lay down the law, for those companies are finally creating a single market for digital services.

  • She sat down with our reporter General Doom Allow.

  • Thank you so much for joining us today, Commissioner.

  • It's a pressure now.

  • Digitalization is, of course, a very important topic in Europe.

  • And with your Digital Services Act, you would like to see a range of rules imposed on big tech companies like Facebook and Google and Apple rules, like making them share their data with smaller rivals.

  • What is it that you think that they're doing that is so wrong?

  • Well, the last time when when our democracies sort of said things you could do things you cannot do That was back in the digital stone age.

  • That was the year 2000, and no one back then imagined what's what.

  • What would be the case of our reality today.

  • So when you then grow up on you become strong.

  • Then, of course, comes responsibility Onda, we need to say to some of these service providers.

  • You have a responsibility for the way you do business to make sure that people feel Aziz comfortable when they're online as well as when they're offline on that I think is very important.

  • And also for these businesses, the alternative is that member states, they make their own legislation.

  • You see that?

  • I think I understand the worries in so many member states right now.

  • So if you have maybe 27 different kinds of legislation to deal with instead of having one European legislation, and since I don't think that it could be any different, that legislation is coming now, I think I would still prefer to have one set of rules toe live by.

  • But can it keep up with the breakneck speed of tech?

  • Well, not alone.

  • The details of Services Act will not do it alone.

  • I also think that we need to say to some of the gatekeepers, there's there are a number of things that you simply cannot do so that basically regulate from the outset to say this, ABC don't do it and last but not least, to be able to say, Well, we don't want new gatekeepers to arise.

  • We want to make sure that also other digital markets that they stay competitive so that more businesses have a fair chance of presenting their services to us as customers.

  • But there isn't there also the argument that, uh, it would also serve competition if we were able to have the conditions here in Europe that would create the equivalent of a European Facebook or a European apple or a European Google?

  • Why don't we have the equivalent of those companies?

  • And could regulation be getting in the way?

  • Well, I think way failed 2010 20 years ago in providing a really digital single market, because one of the reasons why the Giants are giants today and that also goes for the Chinese giants was that they had a single market.

  • They had a giant home market, while they could grow the strength to become global companies on This is why one side of things.

  • It's of course, for society to catch up with the digital development.

  • But the second thing is to provide a real digital single market also for European businesses to grow and to provide a capital market with sort of mawr risk taking.

  • For instance, venture capital that comes with capital, but also with knowledge about how to how to scale up this company.

  • Because Europe is incredibly innovative.

  • A lot of things are happening, but we need to provide businesses with the market on with the capital needed.

  • Is it your aim to break up these big companies in Europe?

  • And how would that look by these companies?

  • I mean, of course, the U.

  • S Tech companies.

  • Well, I'm somewhat reluctant to that idea.

  • The first thing that will happen with that we would spend, you know, a decade in a courtroom.

  • The second thing is that we don't know what would be the outcome.

  • Uh, it may be that we just have, like, more giants, Uh, instead of having giants that are regulated on that serves their purpose in the marketplace by giving room for others.

  • I know it's very much a US debates on desire US companies, but I think a proper European approach would be to say you're more than welcome to be successful.

  • But the thing is, with success comes responsibility, and this is the face that we're in now to say Well, you have to recognize that you have powers beyond anyone else.

  • And with that comes a responsibility.

  • They're also appealing a ruling that saw and you court overturn your victory against Apple.

  • Apple will now not have to pay back $14.3 billion to Ireland.

  • What's going to be the strategy this time around?

  • What argument will use?

  • Well, of course, we are sort of prime thing is that we respect the courtroom.

  • Uh, but also here, respectfully, we find that the General Court have made some errors of law that were then appealing.

  • Um, it is part of the reasoning.

  • Gets quite technical to get into it.

  • Uh, the thing that that we're very happy with in the judgment is that the court still say you can do what you have done.

  • You can use us your state aid tools.

  • Also, when it comes to, uh, to aid being handed out as a tax benefit on you can do your analysis.

  • Uh, then, of course, agreement stops.

  • But now we'll see what the European Court of Justice will say, given that this is your second term as the competition commissioner, and you've seen you've seen some of these setbacks and we've learned to also recognize as the public how difficult it actually is to regulate very big companies to try and prevent monopolies.

  • How would you rate your success as a commissioner?

  • Well, as they say, it ain't over.

  • So the fat lady sings, Andi, I have four more years to go, so I love to pick it up when we get there.

  • Thank you very much.

  • You're welcome.

you.

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A2 BEG european digital single market market legislation commissioner

"We have to hold Big Tech accountable" Interview with EU Competition Commissioner Margrethe Vestager

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    林宜悉   posted on 2020/10/23
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