The OIP recalls that Google remains the only beneficiary of the Shopping Units, causing irreparable harm to competition and consumers all across Europe

Paris, May 17th 2019 — In reaction to the DG Comp Director General Johannes Laitenberg’s comment at the ICN Annual Conference on Google’s compliance with the Google Search prohibition decision, the Open Internet Project (OIP) reemphasises the importance of the decision and the respective compliance mechanism as a landmark precedent for the entire European digital market.

  In that context, the members of the OIP recall that:

  1. Today, 23 months after the EC’s decision,Google remains the only beneficiary of Shopping Units, as it is the only one entitled to compile, display and monetise boxes that compare products and prices directly on its gatekeeper general search results pages.
  2. By putting these Google-powered Shopping Units at the top of every relevant results page, above more relevant comparison services, Google continues to reserve the important market for comparison shopping services to itself. Reserving Google Shopping Units to Google is still no equal treatment.
  3. Since Google’s Shopping Units do not contain the best prices, this causes consumers to overpay for products every day. 
  4. Causing irreparable harm to competition and consumers in Europe, Google’s conduct is thus neither compliant nor positive for anyone apart from Google itself

Please find the link to Grant Thornton’s  Google shopping EU benchmark study here and the link to a joint letter of leading comparison sites to Commissioner Vestager here.