Margrethe Vestager

Commissioner for Competition, European Union
Margrethe Vestager is in charge of regulating commercial activity across the European Union and enforcing the EU’s rules designed to keep the markets fair.

Why you should listen

Margrethe Vestager has been described as "the most powerful woman in Brussels" -- otherwise said, in European politics. As Commissioner for Competition for the European Union, Vestager is in charge of regulating commercial activity across the 28 member states and enforcing the EU's rules designed to keep the markets fair -- rules that, she believes, some big companies have been abusing. In 2016, Vestager ordered Apple to pay €13 bn (about US$15.3 bn) in back taxes. In June 2017, she fined Google €2.4 bn (US$2.8 bn) for manipulating search results in favor of its own services. Other antitrust cases are open against Google. Facebook, Amazon, Russian natural gas producer Gazprom, Italian carmaker Fiat and others are also on her radar screen.
Born in Denmark, Vestager held various ministerial posts in her country's government before being appointed to the European Commission in 2014. Her politics are liberal in the classic meaning of the term: free speech, free assembly and free trade -- but she argues that it can only happen if markets are free of undue influence and anti-competitive behaviors.

Margrethe Vestager’s TED talk

More news and ideas from Margrethe Vestager


Future visions: The talks of TEDGlobalNYC

September 21, 2017

The advance toward a more connected, united, compassionate world is in peril. Some voices are demanding a retreat, back to a world where insular nations battle for their own interests. But most of the big problems we face are collective in nature and global in scope. What can we do, together, about it? In a […]

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