Google’s Sundar Pichai meets with the Australian Prime Minister after the dispute over the brand new regulation
SINGAPORE – Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison said Thursday he had a “constructive meeting” with Google chief Sundar Pichai after the tech giant threatened to pull its search engine out of the country over a possible new law.
Essentially, Australia wants internet giants Facebook and Google, a subsidiary of Alphabet, to pay for news.
The government introduced a media law in parliament in December. If passed, the digital platforms would have to pay local media and publishers according to the new media negotiation code to link their content in news feeds or search results. If the parties cannot reach an agreement, a government-appointed panel will decide the price.
“I thought it was a constructive meeting,” Morrison told reporters Thursday. This emerges from the minutes of a press conference published by his office.
“I have been able to send them the best possible signals that should encourage them very much to get involved in the process and make the arrangements we want to make with the various media organizations in Australia,” he said.
According to Morrison, during the call, Google raised certain aspects of the media negotiation code, and the discussions have touched on the company’s ability to continue offering services in Australia.
“Ultimately, they understand that Australia sets the rules for how these things work. And it was very clear to me how I saw that,” said Morrison without further elaboration.
Google did not immediately respond to CNBC’s request for comment.