The European Union’s recent decision to fine the American tech company Apple a hefty €1.8 billion (almost $2 billion) for its role as a music streaming app distributor is not just misguided—it’s an aggressive overreach that threatens innovation, the free marketplace, and consumer choice for Europeans.

The European Commission’s accusation that the App Store obstructs competition in the digital music market lacks credible evidence of consumer harm. Despite the market’s rapid growth and competitiveness, the decision overlooks these realities.

Spotify, the largest music streaming app globally, spearheads this accusation, having met with the Commission over 65 times during the investigation. However, the thriving digital music market contradicts the Commission’s claims.

The facts are clear. Spotify, headquartered in the EU member state Sweden, enjoys a dominant position in the digital music market with over 56% share in Europe. Despite its remarkable success, Spotify pays Apple nothing for its services, leveraging the App Store’s tools and technology to reach billions of users worldwide.

The App Store has played a pivotal role in Spotify’s journey from a startup to a global leader in digital music. Apple’s support has ensured a seamless experience for Spotify users. Despite these contributions, Spotify pays Apple nothing for the privilege.

Despite enjoying the benefits of the App Store, Spotify seeks to rewrite the rules in its favor. It demands to embed subscription prices in its app without using the In-App Purchase system, exploiting Apple’s tools and technologies without contributing financially.

The European Commission’s decision lacks evidence of consumer harm or anti-competitive behavior. With the digital music market experiencing exponential growth and consumers having more choices than ever, this decision only cements Spotify’s dominant position, ironically undermining competition.

The European Commission is issuing this decision just days before its new DMA (Digital Markets Act) regulation comes into force. The EU seems to have no confidence in its latest policy tool, which is obviously designed to hinder American companies from competing fairly in the EU marketplace.

In conclusion, the EU’s decision to aggressively and exclusively target American companies is unacceptable. The EU is not promoting competition or innovation but instead picking winners and losers, extorting money from successful U.S. companies, and limiting European consumer choice.