Australian Parliament Questions Apple And Microsoft On Pricing

By 07:56 Thu, 15 Jul 2021 Comments

In what seems to be a global first, the Australian Parliament has ordered Apple, Microsoft and Adobe System to appear before it and elaborate why their products are priced higher, despite the country's strong currency.

The global companies will be appearing before the parliament in Canberra on March 22 after all the three companies had earlier declined to appear before the special committee, which was set up to investigate the issue.

The Australian dollar is currently valued higher than the US dollar and yet a 16 Giga Bytes (GB) Wi-Fi-only iPad 4 costs the equivalent of $539 in the land of OZ, $40 above the US price. Similarly, Microsoft's Office 365 is priced at the equivalent of $119 in Australia against that of $99.99 in the United States.

The companies have blamed the high operating costs of their branches in the land down under, due to the high local wages and relatively high import fees. The small market, too, has contributed to the high pricing of the products, according to some other multinational IT companies.

If the questioned companies fail to appear before the committee on the schedule, it could lead to contempt of parliament charges, fines and even jail terms.




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