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Apple Could Face Korean Sanctions Over iPhone Carrier Contracts

April 9, 2018, 4:21 PM UTC

Apple might soon have some problems in Korea.

Korea’s Fair Trade Commission (FTC) could soon impose fines on Apple for allegedly requiring local carriers to run ads and fix iPhones at their own expense, The Korea Herald is reporting, citing sources who claim to have knowledge of those deals. Three carriers—SKT, KT, and LG Uplus—all aired commercials in November promoting the iPhone 8 and iPhone X at Apple’s request. But instead of Apple paying for the cost of those advertisements, the tech giant instead required those carriers to foot the bill, the report claims.

The FTC has been investigating the claims and has solicited responses from Apple to questions it has about the alleged deal between the iPhone maker and carriers. If those answers are not satisfactory, the FTC could move forward with sanctions and penalties, The Korea Herald‘s sources say.

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Apple has felt the wrath of other regulators in the past for its deals with carriers. In 2013, the company was levied a $666,000 fine for requiring Taiwan’s carriers to sell iPhones at prices it had determined. French watchdogs slapped Apple with a 48.5 million euro ($60 million) fine in 2016 for what they said were illegal terms with the country’s carriers. One of those terms included carriers contributing to a fund for iPhone advertising.

It’s unknown how much a Korean fine could cost Apple or if it’ll even happen. For its part, Apple hasn’t publicly commented on the Korea FTC’s moves and has not immediately responded to a Fortune request for comment on The Korea Herald report.