U.S. tech giant Apple has settled a Russian fine of 1.2 billion roubles ($13.65 million), imposed by Russia’s Federal Antimonopoly Service (FAS) over allegations of the company’s abuse of its dominant market position in in-app payments. The FAS announced this information on Monday, revealing that Apple made the payment on January 19.
Despite the settlement, Apple has yet to provide a comment in response to the FAS announcement, maintaining its earlier stance of “respectfully disagreeing” with the agency’s ruling. The FAS had previously asserted that Apple’s distribution of apps through its iOS operating system unfairly favored its own products, giving them a competitive advantage.
The Federal Antimonopoly Service confirmed that the 1.2 billion roubles fine has been transferred to Russia’s federal budget. This resolution follows a similar incident in February 2023, where Apple paid approximately $12.1 million in another antitrust case, addressing allegations of the company’s abuse of dominance in the mobile apps market.
The backdrop of strained relations between Russia and foreign technology companies has been ongoing for several years, with particular emphasis on disputes related to what Moscow considers unlawful content and a failure by these companies to store user data locally. Tensions heightened after Russia deployed troops to Ukraine in February 2022.
In response to the conflict in Ukraine, Apple took significant measures, including the suspension of all product sales in Russia and limitations on its Apple Pay service within the country. These actions underscore the technology giant’s commitment to navigating the complex geopolitical landscape and complying with various regulatory challenges.