Digital Single Market

The Internet and digital technologies are transforming our world – in every walk of life and in every line of business. Europe must embrace the digital revolution and open up digital opportunities for people and businesses. How? By using the power of the EU’s Single Market.

At present, barriers online mean citizens miss out on goods and services: only 15% shop online from another EU country; Internet companies and start-ups cannot take full advantage of growth opportunities online: only 7% of SMEs sell cross-border (see Factsheet for more figures). Finally, businesses and governments are not fully benefitting from digital tools. The aim of the Digital Single Market is to tear down regulatory walls and finally move from 28 national markets to a single one. A fully functional Digital Single Market could contribute €415 billion per year to our economy and create hundreds of thousands of new jobs.

The Digital Single Market Strategy adopted today includes a set of targeted actions to be delivered by the end of 2016. It is built on three pillars:

Pillar I: Better access for consumers and businesses to digital goods and services across Europe

 

Proposed actions

  1. rules to make cross-border e-commerce easier
  2. to enforce consumer rules more rapidly and consistently, by reviewing the Regulation on Consumer Protection Cooperation
  3. more efficient and affordable parcel delivery
  4. to end unjustified geo-blocking
  5. to identify potential competition concerns affecting European e-commerce markets
  6. a modern, more European copyright law
  7. review of the Satellite and Cable Directive
  8. to reduce the administrative burden businesses face from different VAT regimes

Pillar II: Creating the right conditions and a level playing field for digital networks and innovative services to flourish

 

Proposed actions

  1. present an ambitious overhaul of EU telecoms rules
  2. review the audiovisual media framework
  3. comprehensively analyse the role of online platforms (search engines, social media, app stores, etc.) in the market
  4. reinforce trust and security in digital services, notably concerning the handling of personal data
  5. propose a partnership with the industry on cybersecurity in the area of technologies and solutions for online network security.

Pillar III: Maximising the growth potential of the digital economy

 

Proposed actions

  1. propose a ‘European free flow of data initiative’ to promote the free movement of data in the European Union
  2. define priorities for standards and interoperability in areas critical to the Digital Single Market
  3. support an inclusive digital society where citizens have the right skills to seize the opportunities of the Internet and boost their chances of getting a job. A new e-government action plan will also connect business registers across Europe, ensure different national systems can work with each other, and ensure businesses and citizens only have to communicate their data once to public administrations.

Geo-blocking

Companies and online retailers apply barriers and impose restrictions to consumers on the basis of their nationality or place of residence.

Geo-blocking undermine online shopping and cross-border sales by limiting the possibility for consumers and businesses to benefit from the advantages of online commerce.

+ Digital Single Market

Digital Single Market

The Internet and digital technologies are transforming our world – in every walk of life and in every line of business. Europe must embrace the digital revolution and open up digital opportunities for people and businesses. How? By using the power of the EU’s Single Market.

At present, barriers online mean citizens miss out on goods and services: only 15% shop online from another EU country; Internet companies and start-ups cannot take full advantage of growth opportunities online: only 7% of SMEs sell cross-border (see Factsheet for more figures). Finally, businesses and governments are not fully benefitting from digital tools. The aim of the Digital Single Market is to tear down regulatory walls and finally move from 28 national markets to a single one. A fully functional Digital Single Market could contribute €415 billion per year to our economy and create hundreds of thousands of new jobs.

The Digital Single Market Strategy adopted today includes a set of targeted actions to be delivered by the end of 2016. It is built on three pillars:

Pillar I: Better access for consumers and businesses to digital goods and services across Europe

 

Proposed actions

  1. rules to make cross-border e-commerce easier
  2. to enforce consumer rules more rapidly and consistently, by reviewing the Regulation on Consumer Protection Cooperation
  3. more efficient and affordable parcel delivery
  4. to end unjustified geo-blocking
  5. to identify potential competition concerns affecting European e-commerce markets
  6. a modern, more European copyright law
  7. review of the Satellite and Cable Directive
  8. to reduce the administrative burden businesses face from different VAT regimes

Pillar II: Creating the right conditions and a level playing field for digital networks and innovative services to flourish

 

Proposed actions

  1. present an ambitious overhaul of EU telecoms rules
  2. review the audiovisual media framework
  3. comprehensively analyse the role of online platforms (search engines, social media, app stores, etc.) in the market
  4. reinforce trust and security in digital services, notably concerning the handling of personal data
  5. propose a partnership with the industry on cybersecurity in the area of technologies and solutions for online network security.

Pillar III: Maximising the growth potential of the digital economy

 

Proposed actions

  1. propose a ‘European free flow of data initiative’ to promote the free movement of data in the European Union
  2. define priorities for standards and interoperability in areas critical to the Digital Single Market
  3. support an inclusive digital society where citizens have the right skills to seize the opportunities of the Internet and boost their chances of getting a job. A new e-government action plan will also connect business registers across Europe, ensure different national systems can work with each other, and ensure businesses and citizens only have to communicate their data once to public administrations.
+ Geo-blocking

Geo-blocking

Companies and online retailers apply barriers and impose restrictions to consumers on the basis of their nationality or place of residence.

Geo-blocking undermine online shopping and cross-border sales by limiting the possibility for consumers and businesses to benefit from the advantages of online commerce.

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