The EU Commission has to pay the money because it refused to pay so-called default interest on a previously imposed competition fine that was reduced again years later, as the court announced on Wednesday. The judgment can still be appealed to the ECJ (Case T-610/19).
In 2014, the EU Commission imposed a fine of a good 31 million euros on Europe’s largest telecommunications company for abusing its dominant position in the Slovakian market. Telekom sued, but already paid the fine. Four years after the Commission’s decision, the EU General Court partially upheld the lawsuit and reduced the fine by around 12 million. The money was then refunded, but the European Commission refused to pay interest on late payments for the approximately four years between the original fine and the refund.
However, the court rejected a claim for additional damages on Wednesday. Deutsche Telekom has not provided any conclusive evidence that the alleged damage actually occurred. (dpa/rs)