India’s EU-style antitrust law is raising concerns among tech giants

India’s proposed EU-style antitrust law is causing waves of concern among major technology companies such as Apple, Google, Meta and Amazon. The new rules, which have not yet been approved by parliament, impose stringent compliance obligations that could significantly impact the business models of these global tech giants.

The Indian government is currently reviewing the panel’s February report, which suggested introducing a “Digital Competition Act” to supplement existing antitrust laws. The development, first reported by Reuters, highlights growing regulatory scrutiny in digital markets, which are seen as increasingly dominated by a few large companies.

A prominent US lobbying group has already expressed its opposition to the proposed legislation, fearing the potential business consequences. The new law targets “digital systemically important” companies with a domestic turnover of more than $480 million or a global turnover of more than $30 billion, coupled with at least 10 million local user bases using their digital services.

Related: UK regulator investigates tech giants’ artificial intelligence partnerships amid competition concerns

According to the government panel, the need for new regulations results from the growing concentration of the digital market, which gives a few large entities significant control over market dynamics. The panel argues that this concentration forces smaller digital companies and start-ups to rely heavily on larger companies, creating a significant bargaining power imbalance.

The proposed bill requires businesses to act in a fair and non-discriminatory manner. Failure to comply can result in severe penalties, including fines of up to 10% of a company’s global turnover, reflecting the stringent measures under the EU’s Digital Markets Act.

The technology industry is closely monitoring progress on this legislation, aware that its passage could usher in a new era of regulatory challenges in one of the world’s fastest-growing digital markets.