(Reuters) – Microsoft Corp said on Wednesday it fully supported proposed new laws in Australia that would force internet giants Google and Facebook Inc to pay domestic media outlets for their content.
“While Microsoft is not subject to the legislation currently pending, we’d be willing to live by these rules if the government designates us,” the software firm said in a statement.
Prime Minister Scott Morrison said on Monday Microsoft was ready to step in and expand its search product Bing in Australia if Google pulls its search engine, after he spoke with Microsoft Chief Executive Satya Nadella last week.
Microsoft in its statement said it will offer small firms a chance to transfer advertising business to Bing with no costs and that it would invest further in the product to ensure it is competitive.
Google did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
(Reporting by Rashmi Ashok in Bengaluru and Byron Kaye in Sydney; Editing by Himani Sarkar and Sam Holmes)