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EU Fines Microsoft Record $1.35 Billion

February 27, 2008

Regulators for theEuropea Union have fined Microsoft the equivalent of $1.35 billion for not following sanctions in a previous ruling that Microsoft had held back information from competitors about how to interoperate with software produced by rivals.

The EU had ordered Microsoft to do this.

Microsoft had complied on the face of it, but yesterday the EU said this cost of complaince was too high until October 22, 2007, when Microsoft had lowered their licensing fees to do so.

Specifically he Commission said that Microsoft had charged "unreasonable prices for access to interface documentation for work group servers."

"Microsoft was the first company in 50 years of EU competition policy that the Commission has had to fine for failure to comply with an antitrust decision. I hope that today's decision closes a dark chapter in Microsoft's record of non-compliance with the Commission's March 2004 decision," EU Competition Commissioner Neelie Kroes said in a statement at the time the fine was announced.

Microsoft lodged objections:

"As we demonstrated last week with our new interoperability principles and specific actions to increase the openness of our products, we are focusing on steps that will improve things for the future," Microsoft said in a statement.

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