Apple under investigation by Brazilian antitrust agency over MercadoLibre complaint

Brazil’s antitrust watchdog CADE has launched an investigation against Apple on the complaint of an e-commerce retailer MercadoLibre which “alleged abuse of a monopoly in the distribution of apps for its devices” by the tech giant.

Nasdaq-listed MercadoLibre is one of Latin America’s largest companies with a capitalization of $53.82 billion and it filed the complaint in Brazil and Mexico. 

Brazil antitrust

Apple accused of imposing restrictions on the distribution of digital goods and in-app purchases

According to Reuters, the Cupertino tech giant was criticized by the South American company, for requiring developers who offered goods and services within apps to use its own payment system and stopping them from redirecting buyers to their websites. MercadoLibre argued that the current anti-steering policy is anti-competitive and harms the digital marketplace.

Senior vice president of legal and public affairs Jacobo Cohen Image said in a statement:

“This clearly harms its competitors, unless they have integrated digital giants themselves, who may even benefit from this artificial tilt towards integrated ecosystems,”

Apple complaint 2

In a U.S. court trial over similar allegations, it was found that Apple had not violated antitrust law in part because “its rules led to security benefits for users that outweighed any harm to app-makers.”

CADE said that the antitrust cases made against Apple are underway around the world which includes countries in the European Union, Britain, South Korea, Japan, India, and Indonesia.

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