Renowned tech titan Alibaba Group has been slapped a record $2.8 billion fine by China after it found abusing its powerful market status for many years.
According to regulators in China, Alibaba had abused its dominant market position for several years.
However, in a statement, the company said it affirmed the ruling and would “ensure its compliance”.
Alibaba used its platform rules and technical methods “to maintain and strengthen its own market power and obtain an improper competitive advantage,” the State Administration for Market Regulation reasoned in its investigation.
“The high fine puts the regulator in the media spotlight and sends a strong signal to the tech sector that such types of exclusionary conduct will no longer be tolerated,” said the director of Centre for Chinese Law at the University of Hong Kong.
“It’s a stone that kills two birds,” she added.
According to the statement, “Alibaba’s practice of imposing a pick one from two choices on merchants shuts out and restricts competition in the domestic online retail market.”
Earlier, a strategic partnership had been announced between Saudi Telecom Company (STC) and Alibaba Cloud, a major technology company in China.
Under the partnership, the Chinese company would have offer high-performance computing services in Saudi Arabia.
In addition, the Saudi capital, Riyadh, would be the regional centre for the Chinese group’s administrative and training affairs.