DTI consults on e-commerce directive

The DTI has launched an eight week consultation on draft regulations to implement the EU e-commerce directive.

The directive has been developed to encourage e-commerce across Europe by removing barriers and boosting consumer confidence.

‘We need to get the legal framework right. This consultation will help make sure we get the legislation framed so we make the UK the best place to do e-commerce. The regulations will be finalised after careful consideration of the responses to the consultation,’ said e-commerce minister Douglas Alexander.

The Treasury is running a parallel consultation on implementing the directive in the financial services sector.

‘The financial services sector provides a large proportion of e-commerce transactions and the nature of the risks involved in using e-commerce in this sector means it needs a separate consultation,’ a DTI spokesman said.

Preparations for the single market at EU level also warrant the separate consultation, he explained.

The directive was agreed in June 2000, and details the information an online service provider must give a consumer and the information that must be given about discounts and offers in online advertising.

The consultation closes on May 2 and the government aims to implement the directive by this summer. So far only Austria, Germany and Luxembourg have implemented the guidelines.

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