Consumers will be better protected thanks to new rules pushed by S&Ds

Words consumer protection

The European Parliament today adopted an S&D-led report that will strengthen national authorities’ powers to enforce consumer rights. The Consumer Protection Co-operation Regulation established in 2004 set up effective methods of co-operation between public authorities responsible for enforcing consumers’ rights, but the growth in cross-border trade and e-commerce made a reform of the rules necessary.

Olga Sehnalová, S&D MEP and author of the report, said:

“The new rules will strengthen cross-border co-operation between authorities to better enforce consumer-protection laws. Giving the growth of e-commerce and cross-border trade, this reform is key to empower consumers. National authorities will be given far-reaching powers; they will be able to impose fines and penalty payments, purchase goods and services under a cover identity or to seek commitments from the trader to offer adequate remedies to consumers who have suffered harm.

“I am glad that we were able to boost the role played by consumer organisations in the whole mechanism. Consumer organisations will now be able to post alerts and be actively consulted by the relevant authorities or the Commission during both the investigation and enforcement phase. The new rules also strengthen the European Commission’s role in co-ordinated action against a faulty economic operator, notably in cases of widespread infringements that harm the collective interests of consumers in at least two-thirds of the EU's member states, accounting overall for at least two-thirds of the population of the Union."

S&D Group spokesperson for the internal market and consumer protection committee, Nicola Danti MEP, added:

“The new rules make consumer protection fit for the digital age. Consumers must be able to shop with confidence online, including across borders. Today’s vote is a positive step to ensure strong and enforceable consumer rights for everyone in the EU.”