Clear rules to put an end to "digital Wild West"

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“The European Parliament stands against unfair business practices of the digital giants”, said Andreas Schwab MEP, who is the European Parliament's chief negotiator of the Digital Markets Act (DMA), ahead of the final plenary vote on the law this Wednesday.

At today’s plenary debate on rules on what companies with ‘gatekeeper’ status will be allowed to do and not to do in the EU, Schwab pointed out that the aim is to make digital markets open and competitive. “This is good for consumers, good for businesses and good for digital innovation. Our message is clear: the European Union will also enforce the rules of the social market economy in the digital sphere, and this means that lawmakers set the rules of competition, not the ‘terms and conditions’ of digital giants”, said Schwab.

He also stressed that since the European Commission only has limited resources to monitor the rules, it is important to focus on the biggest competition problems first. “We therefore want to sensibly involve the national authorities in monitoring compliance. We also reinforce the new requirements for large digital companies. As a result, innovative start-ups will be able to compete with the established internet giants. The best idea, not the size of the company, will decide on economic success. This creates more choices for digital products, which will benefit consumers”, added Schwab.

While Parliament's plenary deals this week with the DMA, the closely linked Digital Services Act (DSA) is being voted on this morning by Parliament’s Internal Market and Consumer Protection Committee. Arba Kokalari MEP, who is negotiating the DSA on behalf of the EPP Group, said that the vote is a clear signal from the European Parliament to have a digital single market with clear rules providing for both strong consumer protection and a business-friendly environment. “The DSA will put an end to the digital wild west where the big platforms set the rules themselves and criminal content goes viral."

"I'm happy that we found a compromise that doesn't overburden small companies with disproportionate obligations and also gives medium-sized companies the chance to be exempt from some requirements by applying for a waiver. In addition, I am pleased to have due diligence obligations that will prevent the sale of illegal products online, while still allowing for a flourishing and innovative e-commerce sector", continued Kokalari.

"Both the DSA and the DMA will ensure a fair online environment for companies and for citizens. As the EPP Group, we are ensuring that consumers are protected online as they are protected offline. We want a proportionate approach, making sure that big online companies with a systemic risk take more responsibility for what happens on their platforms, while SMEs are not overburdened and prevented from growing and scaling-up", concluded Schwab.

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The EPP Group is the largest political group in the European Parliament with 177 Members from all EU Member States

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