According to the European Union, Intel is trying to drive competitors out of the market with its anti-competitive behavior, contrary to the anti-monopoly laws of this union.
The EU fine of 376 million euros (about $400 million) is related to Intel’s dominance of x86 processors in the CPU chip market and attempts to limit other manufacturers, especially AMD.
For the first time in 2009, after proving that Intel had abused its position in the x86 processor market, the European Union fined the company 1.06 billion euros.
The European Union had accused Intel which first gave hidden rebates to PC manufacturers, with the condition that they buy all the chips they needed from Intel (called conditional rebates); Second, it paid manufacturers to incentivize them to stop making or selling products containing competing companies’ processors (so-called bare restraints).
In 2022, the Economic Crimes Court of the European Union annulled part of the decisions of the European Union in the section related to “conditional discounts”. However, the court confirmed that Intel’s “bare restraint” conduct under EU law still harmed market competitiveness. Also, it completely nullified the entire fine imposed on Intel; because it could not determine the amount of the penalty associated with that section.
However, the European Union announced on September 22, 2023 (September 31, 1402) in a statement that the court has again decided to fine Intel 36.36 million euros for its actions between 2002 and 2006.
In the mentioned years, Intel has paid HP, Acer and Lenovo companies conditionally not to use AMD processors in the production of their products or to use very limited.
Didier RindersThe European Union’s competition policy commissioner has said in a statement that Intel paid its customers to suspend the supply of devices made with competitors’ chips; A work that is in conflict with competition laws.
The EU is still appealing last year’s General Court finding that the Commission’s assessment of Intel’s “conditional rebates” was flawed and could not prove that the rebates were anti-competitive. Therefore, the EU still hopes to recover more than the original fine.