Taiwan’s Fair Trade Commission (FTC) has fined Apple Inc. over its attempts to sell the iPhone at a premium price in Taiwan. Taiwan’s FTC said on Wednesday that it has imposed a fine of $670,000 on Apple for interfering with and trying to dictate the pricing of iPhones sold through Taiwan’s handset distributors and mobile-service providers. If Apple fails to meet the terms of the order then it can face a fine up to $1.6 million or NT$50 million.
Taiwan’s FTC said in a statement, “Through the email correspondence between Apple and these three telecom companies we discovered the companies submit their pricing plans to Apple to be approved or confirmed before the products hit the market.” According to reports, the FTC of Taiwan has held Apple guilty of violating Article 18 of Taiwan’s Fair Trade Act by trying to dictate to the country’s three principal mobile-service providers, how much they should charge for iPhones. Taiwan’s FTC also accused Apple of directly asking the companies to adjust their rates. The three service providers are Chunghwa Telecom Co., Far Eastone Telecommunication Co., and Taiwan Mobile Co.
The FTC of Taiwan said that Apple had no right to dictate the price of iPhones sold by local carriers once it had sold them to the distribution rights for the device. Since the three companies have already paid Apple for purchasing the distribution rights of iPhones, they are free to set the pricing at which they decide to resell the goods.
Samsung, Apple’s arch-rival, had also been fined $340,000 in October by Taiwan’s FTC for instigating and paying for a defamatory internet campaign to attack another company.