South Korea’s Antitrust Regulator Launches Investigation into Apple
Apple is in hot water in South Korea, as the country’s Fair Trade Commission (FTC) is investigating “some matters” without revealing too many details about the investigation, reports Reuters.
The announcement was made by Jeong Jae-Chan, chairman of South Korea’s Fair Trade Commission, at a parliamentary hearing, but he declined to give any details when asked by a South Korean lawmaker.
Earlier this month, local media reports suggested that South Korea’s Fair Trade Commission was looking into Apple’s contracts with the country’s wireless carriers. While it’s easy to speculate that today’s announcement is related in some way to those rumours, it is yet unknown whether the FTC is about to take a closer look at those contracts.
Apple’s contracts with carriers have previously been investigated in France. Earlier in April, the French Directorate General for Competition, Consumer Affairs and Fraud Control (DGCCRF) claimed that Apple’s contracts with the carrier contained unfair clauses, including minimum purchase requirements over a three-year period.
Back in December 2014, Apple was ordered to aid the Competition Bureau’s investigation into whether the company had used its “bargaining power that the popularity of iPhone has given it” to negotiate terms with domestic wireless carriers.