Implementing EU Digital Single Market agenda through new ecommerce rules

download (22)On May 25, 2016, the EU Commission proposed new legislation to “allow consumers and companies to buy and sell products and services online more easily and confidently across the EU”.

As a way to implement a Digital Single Market, the EU Commission plans to boost e-commerce by:

  1. “Tackling geoblocking” –  The proposed legislation shall ensure that consumers seeking to buy products in another EU country (online or in person) “are not discriminated against in terms of access to prices, sales or payment conditions, unless this is objectively justified for reasons such as VAT or certain public interest legal provisions.” In addition, mindful of small businesses, “the Regulation does not impose an obligation to deliver across the EU and exempts small businesses that fall under a national VAT threshold from certain provisions”;
  2. “Making cross-border parcel delivery more efficient” – The proposed Regulation shall “increase price transparency and regulatory oversight of cross-border parcel delivery services so that consumers and retailers can benefit from affordable deliveries and convenient return options even to and from peripheral regions”; and
  3. “Promoting customer trust through better protection and enforcement” -The proposed revision of the Consumer Protection Cooperation Regulation (Regulation 2006/2004) will give more powers to national authorities to better enforce consumer rights by: (a) checking if websites geo-block consumers or violate EU rules (e.g., withdrawal rights); (b) ordering immediate take-down of websites hosting scams; (c) requesting information to detect the identity of responsible traders.

The Press release of the European Commission is available at…

For more information, Francesca Giannoni-Crystal

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