Internal Market Committee supports ban on unjustified geo-blocking, strengthening the European Commission’s proposal from last year.
The EPP Group is in favour of limiting geo-blocking so that consumers can download music from applications, play their favourite video games or read e-books, regardless of in which country they purchased their subscriptions.
“What we want is simple: to end discrimination in the Single Market, based on people’s nationality, residence or temporary location”, said the EPP Group Rapporteur in the Internal Market Committee, Roza Thun MEP.
“Imagine that you walk into a shop and you are refused a sale based on your passport. This discrimination is not allowed in the offline world, so why should we allow it in the online world?” said the Rapporteur. Thun added, however, that there are no obligations on companies to deliver across borders in the Report.
“This proposal is not only about the protection of consumers, but also about the interests of the traders. We have to make sure that traders do not suffer an undue burden”, she said.
"Our work aims at the gradual opening of the European market for consumers and traders whom we equipped with clear rules. Consumers will have better access to goods and services online and it will be less burdensome for traders to sell to consumers from different Member States", Thun explained.
“Unjustified geo-blocking is the reason why national markets are so divided. It deprives customers of choice and value. It hinders businesses, so they cannot expand. If we really want to tear down digital walls within Europe, we need to start with the obvious: digital content and sales of goods need to be used across borders”, said Thun, highlighting that from now on, consumers will be able to purchase “more online content for less trouble”.