UK antitrust regulator refused permission to appeal Apple probe ruling

·1-min read
FILE PHOTO: The Apple Inc logo is seen at the entrance to the Apple store, in Brussels

LONDON (Reuters) -Britain's antitrust regulator was on Wednesday refused permission to appeal against a ruling that it had no power to open an investigation into Apple Inc's mobile browser and cloud gaming services.

Apple won an appeal in March against the decision by the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) to open a full investigation into the dominance of Apple and Alphabet Inc's Google in mobile browsers.

The Competition Appeal Tribunal quashed the decision to open the investigation and on Wednesday refused the CMA's application for permission to appeal against that ruling.

The CMA can still take its bid for permission to appeal against the tribunal's ruling directly to the Court of Appeal.

"We are carefully considering the tribunal's decision and are considering our next steps," a CMA spokesperson said.

The CMA had said in March that the ruling "risks substantially undermining the CMA's ability to efficiently and effectively investigate and intervene in markets".

But, in its decision refusing permission to appeal, the tribunal said that the law on when the CMA can open a market investigation is clear.

"The letter of the law matters, even if it generates undesirable or unfortunate results," the tribunal said.

(Reporting by Sam Tobin, Editing by Paul Sandle)