Why the EU is going after the ‘disruptive’ business model of e-commerce
The European Commission wants to shut down online shops and impose a “no sale, no buy” policy on retailers and sellers.
But the proposals are being hotly debated in the bloc’s national parliaments, with a growing number of countries calling for a more liberal approach.
A European Commission spokesperson said the proposals were aimed at the “disruptor” businesses that are now being used to circumvent the digital marketplace, and said the Commission “has no plans to regulate online retailers”.
The proposal comes as the European Commission prepares to publish its 2017-2020 budget, which is expected to put the EU in a strong financial position, but the EU’s leaders have been criticised for failing to keep pace with rapid economic growth.
“This is a very important issue,” EU Economic and Social Affairs Commissioner Pierre Moscovici said in an interview with French broadcaster BFMTV.
“It’s an issue that we are all concerned about, and we want to deal with it very quickly.”
The Commission’s proposal comes in the wake of the UK’s Brexit vote to leave the EU, which has seen a rise in online sales of more than 1,000% since the referendum, according to the UK Department of Business.
The UK’s government is currently looking at the possible future of the online market, with officials reportedly planning to launch a consultation on the issue in the coming weeks.
However, the Commission’s new proposal will have a much smaller impact on UK retailers than some other proposals currently being considered in the EU.
“We are aiming to close the gap between our own laws and the laws of the EU,” said the spokesperson.
“We think that this would be very beneficial for the UK and for consumers.”