Commission proposals on digital single market a positive step forward

Commission proposals on digital single market a positive step forward, Evelyne Gebhardt, geo-blocking, Petra Kammerevert, Josef Weidenholzer,

The S&D Group has welcomed the latest proposals from the European Commission on the digital single market.

Evelyne Gebhardt, S&D Spokesperson for the internal market and consumer protection, said:

“We welcome these proposals from the Commission and look forward to working on them over the coming months. Removing obstacles to the digital single market is a key priority for the S&D Group. We are pleased with the proposals to tackle unjustified geo-blocking – it is unacceptable that customers end up paying different prices or paying twice for the same service in different member states. The proposals should prevent content providers from using geo-blocking as a way of limiting choice or pushing up prices. The proposal must nonetheless ensure protection for cultural diversity, making sure that choice does not come at the expense of local cultural voices.”

“Ever more purchases are being made online, therefore ensuring rapid and cost efficient delivery of parcels across borders is a priority for the group. However, we must not lose sight of the social dimension and effects on the labour market. We also welcome new rules to ensure that consumers’ rights are protected and can be enforced across the Single Market.”

Petra Kammerevert, S&D spokesperson for culture and education added:

“The way we watch television and films is changing remarkably. We therefore welcome the updated review from the Commission of the rules governing audio-visual media. For us it is essential that whether you are watching and on demand film or a conventional television that these should be governed by the same rules. This helps ensure a level playing field for those producing content and ensures customers can access the content they want, in the way they want. We want to ensure that the laws are fair for all broadcasters, that advertising and child protection rules are fit for the 21st Century and that the revised law continues to promote and encourage original European content. We will continue to push for access to be at the heart of the changes, so that all Europeans can benefit."

Josef Weidenholzer, S&D vice-president and spokesperson for the digital union, said:

“We are finally beginning to really make progress on the path to a fully digital union. Our priority is that this union is based on fairness and inclusion.

“We also welcome the first ideas on online platforms. For us it is important that all platforms operate fairly across borders. It is essential that they respect competition, support future rules on consumer, e-commerce and copyright, are transparent in how they operate, respect data protection rules, and abide by the laws covering their offline equivalents.”

“We also urge the Commission to put forward a clear and ambitious strategy on digital skills as soon as possible. This is needed to ensure that no European is left behind and all can take advantage of this developing European digital market place.”