Chairman Mlsna participated in DMA approval meeting of the COMPET Council

2021-11-25
Petr Mlsna, Chairman of the Office for the Protection of Competition, participated on 25th November in the meeting of the Competitiveness Council of the European Union, which approved the proposed regulation of digital markets and services.

The Czech position on the legislative proposal under discussion was presented by Ms Martina Tauberová, Deputy Minister of Industry and Trade, with the presence of the Chairman of the Office. The Digital Market Act (DMA) and Digital Services Act are intended to be a breakthrough regulation of big companies in the digital sector. The EU Council approved the general approach concerning DMA unanimously. This represents a significant step forward in the legislative process, which will now continue through negotiations with the European Parliament.

The DMA proposal aims to ensure that large online platforms follow fair and non-discriminatory rules, which should benefit consumers and business users, including innovators and start-ups. It is a new ex ante regulation in the digital sector, aimed at responding to the specificities of this area, in particular to the fact that the large online platforms, which the regulation refers to as gatekeepers, are the ones who set the rules for entry into these markets. Possible solutions to the issues of digital markets are being considered and put into practice not only in the EU but also in other regions worldwide.

The DMA proposal seeks to ensure that there is uniform regulation within the EU in this area which should prevent fragmented application of rules across the Member States. The divergent application would lead, among other things, to unnecessary costs for the companies involved, which would ultimately have a negative impact on consumers due to the pass-through of these costs. That is why the European Commission is intended to have the primary competence to enforce the DMA rules.

During the discussions on the proposal, the debates were mainly focused on the obligations imposed on gatekeepers, with some Member States supporting the tightening of obligations or the introduction of new ones. The Czech Republic has taken a rather flexible stance on these issues and has sought to avoid "over-regulation" and excessive burdens on businesses operating in the internal market, which could lead to suppression of innovation or to reduction in the range of services offered and, as a result, to decrease in the welfare of consumers. The Czech Republic has also sought to ensure that the regulation does not affect medium-sized companies operating in this area, but that the obligations are addressed to all big players who are effectively acting as gatekeepers.

Press Unit of the Office

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