Microsoft is the subject of a new EU antitrust complaint over its cloud computing practices

CISPE alleged that Microsoft’s new contractual terms imposed on October 1, along with other practices, are causing irreparable damage to the European cloud computing ecosystem.

Amazon is the market leader in cloud computing, followed by Microsoft and Google, the unit of Alphabet.

“Leveraging its dominance in productivity software, Microsoft is restricting choice and inflating costs as European customers seek to move to the cloud, distorting Europe’s digital economy,” said Francisco Mingorance, secretary general of CISPE, in a statement. a press release

The company is using its dominance in productivity software to direct European customers to its Azure cloud infrastructure, to the detriment of its European rivals, CISPE alleged in its complaint to the European Commission.

It alleged that Microsoft’s anti-competitive practices included discriminatory group and related selling of its products, self-preferential pricing, and foreclosure of customers both technically and competitively.

Microsoft, which has been fined more than 1.6 billion euros ($1.6 billion) by the Commission in the past decade for various antitrust violations, has previously said it offered its software to all customers, including rival cloud service providers.

Cloud service providers in Germany, Italy, Denmark and France, two of which are CISPE members, have filed similar complaints with the Commission over the past two years.

Microsoft later amended licensing agreements and made other changes to make it easier for cloud service providers to compete starting Oct. 1, in a bid to stave off EU antitrust concerns.

Rivals, Alphabet’s Google, Alibaba and Microsoft’s own cloud services are excluded from these changes, however.

CISPE said the EU’s competition watchdog should tackle the problem by applying Microsoft’s trade body Fair Software Licensing Principles developed last year.

She said an independent European observatory could be set up to check the licensing terms of mainstream software companies.

The Commission could also add another provision to recently passed technology rules, known as the Digital Markets Act, prohibiting cloud computing gatekeepers from favoring their software applications, CISPE said.

($1 = 0.9909 euros)

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