Written by: Trevor Steele, Peak Associate 


Google fined record amount

The European Union (EU) has imposed its largest ever fine (4.34 billion euro), on Google.

     According to the EU competition commissioner Margrethe Vestager, “Google engaged in illegal practices to cement its dominant market position in internet search.” Vestager explained that negotiations between the tech giant and major phone manufacturing companies resulted in a “significant majority” of phones sold in the EU to be pre-installed with Google’s search engine and Chrome browser. In exchange, these companies received licensing for Google apps.

     In 2017 the EU fined Google 2.4 billion euro for issues with its shopping comparison service.

With files from AFP.


Flooding in Japan

Floods have hit western Japan hard over the past week. Over 200 people have lost their lives due to the extreme weather.

     In a nation known for its earthquake-preparedness, the region was ill-equipped for flood disasters according to experts, an issue compounded by the fact that many homes in the region are built on mountainous terrain.

     Most communities are still without water and sanitation as the flood waters recede.     

With files from The Japan Times.


Italy rejects free-trade agreement with Canada

Italy’s Deputy Prime Minister Luigi Di Maio has confirmed that parliament will reject Canada’s trade agreement with the European Union. The Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA) must be ratified by each parliament in all twenty eight E.U member states, and has so far been ratified by ten states.

     Italy’s agriculture minister Gian Marco Centinaio had previously announced that Italy would not ratify the agreement because it failed to protect Italy’s special regional appellations for things like cheese and alcohol.

     Despite Italy’s protests a provisional trade agreement between Canada and the European Union has been in effect since September.

With files from Le Monde.


France wins World Cup

France won the FIFA World Cup for the second time on Sunday with a 4–2 victory over Croatia.

     The match reflected much of the action from the tournament, with a penalty awarded through the video assistant referee, an own goal, and three of the goals coming from outside of the box.

     Despite the loss, Croatia’s Luka Modric was named the best player of the tournament.

     The World Cup will return in 2022 in Qatar, and in 2026 in Mexico, the United States, and Canada.   

With files from The Guardian, Global News, and FIFA.