MOSCOW (Reuters). – Russia announced Tuesday that it will this month pursue a penalty against Google, the U.S. technology giant. This is Russia’s most aggressive effort to curb foreign tech companies.
Roskomnadzor, the communications regulator, stated that Google failed to pay 32.5 Million Rupees (458,100) in sanctions imposed so far this fiscal year. It also announced it would seek a fine equaling 5-20% of Google’s Russian turnover. This could be a substantial increase.
Google has not yet responded to the request for comment.
Russia is putting more pressure on tech companies from abroad to control the internet. Since March, Twitter has been slowing down (NYSE:). Other content violators are routinely being fined by Russia.
After removing an anti-government tactical vote app from its stores, opposition activists accused Alphabet’s Google (NASDAQ) and Apple (NASDAQ) of bowing to Kremlin pressure.
Roskomnadzor had earlier stated in October that it would request a court to impose an amount of turnover on Facebook (NASDAQ) citing the December 2020 legislation.
Roskomnadzor stated in emailed comments Tuesday to Reuters that a similar case would be filed against Google. He noted that Google also owns YouTube video-hosting website YouTube.
SPARK’s business database revealed that Google’s Russia 2020 turnover was 85.5 million roubles. The fine of between 4.3 billion and 17.1 million roubles would be equal to 5-20%.
Google currently fights a court order demanding that it remove the YouTube account from a Russian businessman. If paid, Google would also face an additional fine of 10% on its total turnover.
(£1 = 70.9450 Roubles).
Additional reporting by Alexander Marrow and editing by Kirsten Dovan
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