Internet Competition

Berlin Disharmony Over Google

monopoly commission-stefan boness-ipon
Monopolies Commission President Daniel Zimmer (l) and Economy Minister Sigmar Gabriel don't see eye-to-eye on dominant players like Google.
  • Why it matters

    Why it matters

    • Germany needs to clarify its regulations for dealing with monopolies in the digitial economy.
  • Facts


    • According to Mr. Gabriel, large Internet companies are clearly determined to gain total control of the entire Internet infrastructure.
    • The Monopolies Commission concluded that competition and cartel law needs to be adjusted to the new conditions of the digital economy.
    • The commission advised the European Union to use expedited proceedings to address cases of suspected abuse of competition.
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The chairman of the German Monopolies Commission, Daniel Zimmer, is opposed to a breakup of Internet giant Google, putting him on a collision course with Economy Minister Sigmar Gabriel, who seeks greater regulation of dominant market players.

That was evident on Monday when the commission presented its special report on competition in digital markets to the government, with Mr. Gabriel at the press conference in Berlin to accept it.

In the report, the commission defended the monopoly position of Internet companies, indirectly including Google.

To some degree, consumers benefit from markets with big players because of the range of products and services they provide and many of them for free, Mr. Zimmer said. The key issue, he stressed, is that the market must remain open for all players.

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