BERLIN — Online retailer Amazon may have broken antitrust laws in Germany by banning third-party traders from selling their products cheaper elsewhere, officials said Wednesday.
German antitrust authorities said they have begun questioning 2,400 traders who signed up to Amazon’s Marketplace platform, where they can sell products directly to the Web giant’s millions of users. In return they must abide by its policies.
The probe comes days after Amazon faced criticism in Germany over the alleged mistreatment of temporary workers and in the wake of accusations in the United Kingdom that the Internet company has been avoiding paying tax.
The head of Germany’s Federal Antitrust Office said Wednesday there was ‘‘considerable’’ evidence that Amazon’s conditions on third-party traders breached cartel rules by unduly hindering its competitors.