US tech giants are set to face tough new rules in the European Union (EU) starting October this year.

The new rules targeting American technology companies were agreed to late on Thursday, and are expected to be enacted by October this year, EU antitrust chief Margrethe Vestager said on Friday.

“What we want is simple: fair markets also in digital. Large gatekeeper platforms have prevented businesses and consumers from the benefit of competitive digital markets,” Vestager, who proposed the new rules a year ago, said in a statement.

Also read | Russia’s Ukraine war a strategic burden on Beijing: Pentagon

“This means that the time of long antitrust cases, during which the authorities were lagging behind the big tech companies, is over,” added Andreas Schwab, an EU legislator who helped steer the debate and get the new rules approved in the European parliament.

According to Reuters, the new set of rules under the Digital Markets Act (DMA) is applicable for “online gatekeepers,” companies that control data and platform access, across various sub-sectors such as “online intermediation services, social networks, search engines, operating systems, online advertising services, cloud computing, video-sharing services, web browsers and virtual assistants.

Also read | Gold prices remain constant as oil prices fall and bond rates rise

Under the DMA, tech giants will be required to allow business users access to their data and will also have to make their interoperable. The DMA will also let business users promote competing products and services on a ‘gatekeeper’ platform to enable them to access users off the platforms.

Th DMA will be applicable to companies with a market capitalisation of €75 billion, an annual turnover of €7.5 billion, and at least 45 million users. As such, the DMA will be applicable for companies such as Alphabet’s Google, Apple, Amazon, Meta, and Microsoft, among others.

Notably, the DMA will introduce severe penalties for companies failing to operate by the rules: companies could be charged as much as 10% their annual turnover in penalties, while for repeat offenders, that figure could rise to 20% of their annual turnover.