Joaquín Almunia, the European competition commissioner and the top European antitrust official, has been formally investigating Google since November 2010. He has insisted that Google make changes to the most sensitive area of its business, online search.
If Mr. Almunia ultimately accepts Google’s offer, the company will avoid further investigation. Additional inquiry could lead to a fine of as much as 10 percent of Google’s annual global sales, which came to about $50 billion last year. Google would also avoid a guilty finding, which could restrict its activities in Europe.