ERRT welcomes EU Commission’s plans to create a Digital Single Market

ERRT welcomes the EU Commission’s commitment to respond to the growing digitalisation of the global economy by adopting today a set of targeted actions outlined in a Digital Single Market Strategy for Europe. We appreciate the Commission’s ambition to rapidly break down the remaining barriers to cross-border activities so as to provide businesses with new opportunities to scale up across Europe.

What European retail urgently needs is a regulatory environment that gives room to multichannel strategies and innovation. We therefore support the EU Commission’s plan to tackle those areas where Europe continues being a patchwork of national markets, be it in the area of mandatory national consumer contract laws, or of product specific rules. The present fragmentation hampers in particular the development of business-to-consumer online sales across national borders.

Susanne Czech, ERRT Director General, said:“The removal of barriers within the Digital Single Market is a prerequisite for economic growth in Europe. Five years after the launch of the “Digital Agenda for Europe” retailers still face difficulties when selling online to other countries. It is high time to level the playing field for European retailers with international ambitions.”

While ERRT agrees that unjustified “geo-blocking” should be prevented, we should stress that in no case contractual freedom must be challenged.