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Ottawa on Friday spelled out how a new law requiring digital giants to pay publishers for news content will work in practice, including how much it could cost Meta and Google.

The bill aims to support the Canadian news sector. It effectively targets only Google and Meta — which control about 80 per cent of all online advertising revenues in Canada.

The government estimated it could cost the two companies a combined Can$230 million per year by requiring them to make fair commercial deals with Canadian outlets for the news and information that is shared on their platforms, or face binding arbitration.

According to the draft regulations published on Friday, the measures would apply to companies with global annual revenues in excess of Can$1 billion, operating a search engine or social media platform actively used by at least 20 million Canadians and that distributes news.

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