The Digital Single Market welcomes fairer contracts and easier transactions.

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Credit: Virojt Changyencham/Getty

The European Parliament voted yesterday in favour of two reports that will ease the relation between users and providers of digital content and facilitate the cross-border e-market of cultural and non-cultural goods.

The general objective of the initiative is to contribute to faster growth of the Digital Single Market using the potential of e-commerce. In order to achieve it, the Commission proposes to fully harmonise a set of key rules concerning contracts for the supply of digital content such music, films, apps or games and distance sales of goods. One of the main obstacles for cross-border online purchases of this type of content is legal uncertainty and high costs for businesses, hitting predominantly SMEs.

Some key elements of the compromise include the right to terminate long-term contracts, rules on non-conformity and durability guarantees. The initiative will increase most consumers’ trust in the Digital Single Market by providing a high level of consumer protection and ensure more offers and better prices for consumers.

MEP, Jean-Marie Cavada, Legal Affairs Committee shadow rapporteur said:

“The trilogue negotiations on this file were long and difficult but I am very satisfied with the equilibrium that was found as it marks an important step in the definition of common EU rules on digital contracts.”

MEP Morten Løkkegaard, Internal Market and Consumer Protection Committee shadow rapporteur said:

“This is a big achievement for the Single Market. Consumers all over Europe now will have the same, and improved rights, no matter if they are shopping online or in a psychical store. The consumer rights have finally caught up to the digital reality, a platform where more and more transactions happen. Therefore it was essential to update our understanding of consumer rights and with this step, we have paved the way for a fairer market.“

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