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Modernisation of EU consumer protection rules: A new deal for consumers

15-01-2020

On 11 April 2018, the European Commission adopted a proposal for a directive on better enforcement and modernisation of EU consumer protection rules, as part of its 'new deal for consumers' package of measures. The proposal followed a fitness check of consumer legislation and an evaluation of the Consumer Rights Directive that showed that EU consumer legislation could benefit from certain aspects being clarified and brought into line with the reality of the digital economy. Following negotiations ...

On 11 April 2018, the European Commission adopted a proposal for a directive on better enforcement and modernisation of EU consumer protection rules, as part of its 'new deal for consumers' package of measures. The proposal followed a fitness check of consumer legislation and an evaluation of the Consumer Rights Directive that showed that EU consumer legislation could benefit from certain aspects being clarified and brought into line with the reality of the digital economy. Following negotiations between the European Parliament and the Council of the EU, the agreed text was adopted by the European Parliament in April 2019, and the final act was signed on 27 November 2019. The new directive leaves the consumer’s right of withdrawal intact. It will ban several unfair commercial practices, such as false online reviews, and require Member States to set the maximum penalty for widespread infringement to at least 4 % of the trader’s annual turnover. Dual quality of food will not be banned altogether, but could be considered to be misleading depending on the circumstances. Online marketplaces will be required to inform consumers about the parameters of their search results. Fourth edition. The 'EU Legislation in Progress' briefings are updated at key stages throughout the legislative procedure.

Fairness and transparency for business users of online services

12-04-2019

The European Parliament and the Council reached an agreement on the proposed regulation on promoting fairness and transparency for business users of online intermediation services in February 2019. Providers of online intermediation services (e.g. Amazon and eBay) and online search engines (e.g. Google search) will be required to implement a set of measures to ensure transparency and fairness in the contractual relations they have with online businesses (e.g. online retailers, hotels and restaurants ...

The European Parliament and the Council reached an agreement on the proposed regulation on promoting fairness and transparency for business users of online intermediation services in February 2019. Providers of online intermediation services (e.g. Amazon and eBay) and online search engines (e.g. Google search) will be required to implement a set of measures to ensure transparency and fairness in the contractual relations they have with online businesses (e.g. online retailers, hotels and restaurants businesses, app stores), which use such online platforms to sell and provide their services to customers in the EU. The regulation, which, inter alia, harmonises transparency rules applicable to contractual terms and conditions, ranking of goods and services and access to data, is considered to be the first regulatory attempt in the world to establish a fair, trusted and innovation-driven ecosystem in the online platform economy. Now that Member States' and Parliament's negotiators have endorsed the compromise text, the political agreement must be voted in plenary by the European Parliament and formally adopted by the Council to complete the legislative procedure.

Contracts for the supply of digital content and digital services

21-03-2019

On 29 January 2019, the European Parliament and the Council reached a provisional agreement on the European Commission's proposal for a directive regulating the private-law aspects of contracts for the supply of digital content and digital services in the internal market. The directive would, for the first time, harmonise some aspects of such contracts at EU level. The co-legislators agreed that embedded digital content would not be regulated by this directive, but rather by that on sale of goods ...

On 29 January 2019, the European Parliament and the Council reached a provisional agreement on the European Commission's proposal for a directive regulating the private-law aspects of contracts for the supply of digital content and digital services in the internal market. The directive would, for the first time, harmonise some aspects of such contracts at EU level. The co-legislators agreed that embedded digital content would not be regulated by this directive, but rather by that on sale of goods. They also agreed that the duration of legal guarantees for digital content and services would not be fully harmonised but that national laws should not limit it to less than two years; that for the first year from delivery the burden of proof should be on the supplier; and that traders would be required to provide updates. The directive would also establish what remedies consumers are entitled to and the order in which they can be used. Parliament is expected to vote on the provisional agreement during the March II plenary session. Fifth edition of a briefing originally drafted by Rafał Mańko. The 'EU Legislation in Progress' briefings are updated at key stages throughout the legislative procedure. To view previous editions of this briefing, please see: PE 614.707 (February 2018). A more recent edition of this document is available. Find it by searching by the document title at this address: http://www.europarl.europa.eu/thinktank/en/home.html

Consumer sale of goods

19-03-2019

On 29 January 2019, the European Parliament and the Council reached a provisional agreement on the Commission proposal for a new directive on the consumer sale of goods. The Commission's original proposal, from 2015, which was intended to lay down rules on online and other distance sales of goods only, was replaced on 31 October 2017 by an amended version. This sought to replace entirely the existing Consumer Sales Directive dating from 1999, and regulate contracts concluded both online and offline ...

On 29 January 2019, the European Parliament and the Council reached a provisional agreement on the Commission proposal for a new directive on the consumer sale of goods. The Commission's original proposal, from 2015, which was intended to lay down rules on online and other distance sales of goods only, was replaced on 31 October 2017 by an amended version. This sought to replace entirely the existing Consumer Sales Directive dating from 1999, and regulate contracts concluded both online and offline. The provisional agreement on the proposal reached between the Parliament and Council would allow Member States to decide on a legal guarantee of longer than two years and extend the period during which it is presumed that the goods were faulty from the start. Parliament is due to vote on the agreement during the March II 2019 plenary. Fourth edition, based on a briefing originally drafted by Rafał Mańko. The 'EU Legislation in Progress' briefings are updated at key stages throughout the legislative procedure. To view previous versions of this briefing, please see: PE 614.744 (March 2018). "A more recent edition of this document is available. Find it by searching by the document title at this address: http://www.europarl.europa.eu/thinktank/en/home.html"

Contribution to growth. The European Digital Single Market. Delivering economic benefits for citizens and businesses

15-01-2019

Numerous legislative measures have been initiated or enacted in support of the overall achievement of a Digital Single Market (DSM). This in-depth analysis provides a brief stock-taking of what has been achieved in economic terms, of what remains to be done, and of candidate initiatives for the next legislative term. The study was prepared by Policy Department A on the request of European Parliament´s Committee on the Internal Market and Consumer Protection.

Numerous legislative measures have been initiated or enacted in support of the overall achievement of a Digital Single Market (DSM). This in-depth analysis provides a brief stock-taking of what has been achieved in economic terms, of what remains to be done, and of candidate initiatives for the next legislative term. The study was prepared by Policy Department A on the request of European Parliament´s Committee on the Internal Market and Consumer Protection.

Consumer Choice and Fair Competition on the Digital Single Market in the Areas of Air Transportation and Accommodation

16-10-2018

This document was requested by the European Parliament's Committee on the Internal Market. Through a series of case studies it provides an overview of measures implemented by states and firms that may harm competition and consumer choice. It explores the extent to which EU Law may apply to prevent such restrictive practices.

This document was requested by the European Parliament's Committee on the Internal Market. Through a series of case studies it provides an overview of measures implemented by states and firms that may harm competition and consumer choice. It explores the extent to which EU Law may apply to prevent such restrictive practices.

VAT Fraud: Economic Impact, Challenges and Policy Issues

15-10-2018

Each year, the EU Member States lose billions of euros in VAT revenues on account of fraud. As the EU VAT system is undergoing profound modernisation, this study seeks (i) to take stock of the current state of play, (ii) to assess the current regulatory framework and the proposals under discussion, and (iii) to offer a selection of recommendations. An initial conclusion is that, while the European Commission has put a considerable amount of work into the modernisation of the EU VAT system, remaining ...

Each year, the EU Member States lose billions of euros in VAT revenues on account of fraud. As the EU VAT system is undergoing profound modernisation, this study seeks (i) to take stock of the current state of play, (ii) to assess the current regulatory framework and the proposals under discussion, and (iii) to offer a selection of recommendations. An initial conclusion is that, while the European Commission has put a considerable amount of work into the modernisation of the EU VAT system, remaining risks of fraud cannot be ignored. A second substantial conclusion is that a different approach and the use of new technologies would allow the Member States to remove significant obstacles that currently impede an effective fight against VAT fraud. This study was provided by Policy Department A at the request of the TAX3 Committee.

Εξωτερικός συντάκτης

Marie LAMENSCH, Emanuele CECI

Research for TRAN Committee - Overtourism: impact and possible policy responses

15-10-2018

This study addresses the complex phenomenon of overtourism in the EU. By focusing on a set of case studies, the study reports on overtourism indicators, discusses management approaches implemented within different destinations and assesses policy responses. It concludes that a common set of indicators cannot be defined because of the complex causes and effects of overtourism. Avoiding overtourism requires custom-made policies in cooperation between destinations' stakeholders and policymakers.

This study addresses the complex phenomenon of overtourism in the EU. By focusing on a set of case studies, the study reports on overtourism indicators, discusses management approaches implemented within different destinations and assesses policy responses. It concludes that a common set of indicators cannot be defined because of the complex causes and effects of overtourism. Avoiding overtourism requires custom-made policies in cooperation between destinations' stakeholders and policymakers.

Εξωτερικός συντάκτης

Paul PEETERS, Stefan GÖSSLING, Jeroen KLIJS, Claudio MILANO, Marina NOVELLI, Corné DIJKMANS, Eke EIJGELAAR, Stefan HARTMAN, Jasper HESLINGA, Rami ISAAC, Ondrej MITAS, Simone MORETTI, Jeroen NAWIJN, Bernadett PAPP and Albert POSTMA

Prospects for EU-Asia connectivity - The 'European way to connectivity'

12-10-2018

Asia matters to Europe: home to the world's largest population and fastest-growing economies, Asia is a major trade partner of the EU. Recognising this, the EU has promoted the Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM), established strategic partnerships with four Asian countries, intensified cooperation with the Association of South-East Asia Nations (ASEAN), and negotiated or concluded free trade agreements with several Asian countries. As an implementation of its 2016 Global Strategy, the EU has carried out ...

Asia matters to Europe: home to the world's largest population and fastest-growing economies, Asia is a major trade partner of the EU. Recognising this, the EU has promoted the Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM), established strategic partnerships with four Asian countries, intensified cooperation with the Association of South-East Asia Nations (ASEAN), and negotiated or concluded free trade agreements with several Asian countries. As an implementation of its 2016 Global Strategy, the EU has carried out a mapping exercise on Euro-Asian connectivity, followed by the adoption of a joint communication on 'Connecting Europe and Asia – Building blocks for an EU strategy' on 19 September 2018. The strategy proposes that the EU engage with its Asian partners through a sustainable, comprehensive and rules-based approach to connectivity, exploiting existing and planned EU networks. It acknowledges a significant investment gap in connectivity and recognises the need to mobilise and strengthen cooperation with private investors, national and international institutions, and multilateral development banks. The strategy is part of the EU's contribution to the ASEM12 Summit, which is to take place in Brussels on 18-19 October 2018. Presented by Vice President/High Representative, Federica Mogherini, as the 'European way to connectivity', the strategy was immediately perceived as the EU response to China's Belt and Road Initiative (BRI). This initiative is currently raising concerns in the EU and in several participating countries, some of which are worried about possible 'debt traps'.

Promoting fairness and transparency in the online platform environment

21-09-2018

How to promote fairness and transparency in the online platform environment? The Commission's answer to this question can be found in its recent legislative proposal. It stipulates that providers of online intermediation services (e.g. Amazon) and online search engines (e.g. Google search) have to implement certain measures to ensure transparency and fairness in the contractual relations they have with online businesses which use such platforms to provide their services to customers in the EU. This ...

How to promote fairness and transparency in the online platform environment? The Commission's answer to this question can be found in its recent legislative proposal. It stipulates that providers of online intermediation services (e.g. Amazon) and online search engines (e.g. Google search) have to implement certain measures to ensure transparency and fairness in the contractual relations they have with online businesses which use such platforms to provide their services to customers in the EU. This briefing provides you with an appraisal of the quality of the impact assessment, which accompanies the Commission's proposal.

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