The European Parliament’s internal market and consumer protection committee today voted in favour of new rules that would prevent geo-blocking of online content in the EU. This means that companies will no longer be able to stop consumers accessing or purchasing from their website just because they are in a different EU member state.
S&D MEP and vice-chair of the Parliament’s internal market committee, Nicola Danti, said:
“We welcome the new rules on geo- blocking approved today which guarantee EU citizens the access to a wider choice of goods and services, without any sort of discrimination based on their nationality or residence. This is one of the long-awaited and key measures for the realisation of the Digital Single Market. It will put an end to irritating messages saying ‘this content is not available in your current location’ or sudden price changes based on whether you are ordering from the Italian or Swedish version of an e-store. This is a big step forward and will allow citizens and consumers to take advantage of the benefits of the e-commerce sector and bring more legal certainty to the online world.”
Virginie Rozière, S&D Group spokesperson for the report on geo-blocking, added:
“With this regulation, we will efficiently update the internal market rules to the online world. When shopping online, consumers should not be discriminated against based on their location. They should be able to access goods and services from different member states and that is what we will achieve with this regulation. Despite the attempt of right wing groups to lower protections, the S&D Group managed to secure strong consumers’ rights meaning that the same rules must apply in the online and offline world. We will not allow the internet to be a lawless zone!”