BETA


Events

2014/06/18
   Commission response to text adopted in plenary
Documents
2014/02/04
   EP - Results of vote in Parliament
2014/02/04
   EP - Decision by Parliament, 1st reading/single reading
Details

The European Parliament adopted a resolution on an integrated parcel delivery market for the growth of e-commerce in the EU in response to a European Commission Green Paper on the issue.

Parliament underlined that e-commerce is a channel with enormous potential to combat the economic and financial crisis, strengthen the single market, and create economic growth and employment across the European Union. The Commission’s communication on e-commerce and online services of January 2012 and its December 2013 communication ‘ A roadmap for completing the single market for parcel delivery: Build trust in delivery services and encourage online sales ’, identified the delivery of goods purchased online as one of the top five priorities for boosting e-commerce by 2015, and its importance has been reiterated by the Council and by Parliament. The EU e-commerce market grew by over 20% in 2012 and cross-border e-commerce in particular is predicted to multiply by a factor of four.

Integrated delivery services in Europe: a pillar for the Digital Single Market: Parliament recalled that the parcel delivery market is undergoing radical transformations, with new providers entering the market, investment oriented towards innovation, and new services emerging. Therefore, efficient and reliable delivery services are a critical pillar of a real and effective digital single market, having a substantial impact in terms of facilitating e-commerce and building trust between sellers and buyers.

Parliament also noted that delivery concerns (including product returns) and high delivery costs are the top two concerns of consumers in relation to online shopping , contributing to low consumer confidence in cross-border e-commerce. Parliament noted cross-border weaknesses in competition between delivery operators in some Member States and deplored the lack of transparency on the pricing conditions and performance of the services concerned.

Putting consumer interests at the heart of the delivery process: Parliament considered more transparency and better and more readily comparable information on available delivery options, prices and conditions to be paramount for consumers, specifically with respect to the conditions under which consumer orders are shipped and the procedures to follow in case of damage to or loss of goods or delay in their delivery or return. It emphasised that it is necessary to promote measures aimed at ensuring consumer choice at the time of purchase. In this regard, Parliament noted the significant gap between consumer expectations and the availability of convenient, innovative services such as relay points or parcel kiosks, or terminals, round-the-clock services available at any time, track-and-trace solutions, consumer-friendly delivery places and times, or easy return policies. It stressed that reliability of delivery services is crucial and that it is essential to offer efficient systems that guarantee that parcels effectively reach the requested destination within a reasonable timeframe.

The resolution pointed out that the high cost of cross-border delivery or delivery to remote areas or the outermost regions is one of the main reasons for consumer dissatisfaction. More affordable delivery options for consumers and sellers, SMEs included, are imperative to ensure a genuinely single market. Geographical coverage and accessibility to universal service for delivery of parcels in rural and remote areas should be improved.

Parliament also stressed the importance of consumers being properly informed on the applicable legislation in this sector . It proposed the creation of a European network of national problem-solving centres like Solvit would help reassure consumers, as would an alert system like RAPEX, which could warn consumers of sites found to be using fraudulent practices .

It called on the Commission to:

adopt EU guidelines on minimum standards for comparison websites, structured around the core principles of transparency, impartiality, quality, information and user-friendliness; draw up joint delivery service quality indicators, enabling consumers to compare different offers more accurately; provide for a stable and coherent social dimension, where delivery services are subject to compliance with labour rights, terms of employment and remuneration.

Creating a level playing field for SMEs: Parliament emphasised that SMEs seeking business opportunities across the EU are confronted with higher costs, greater complexity and a lack of transparency when it comes to cross-border delivery. Prices for cross-border delivery are three to five times higher than domestic prices. Effective, simple and affordable delivery systems are a key driver of the sustainability of the business models of SMEs and their ability to supply products to customers.

Towards innovative and interoperable solutions for a truly European delivery market: the resolution highlighted the fragmentation of the European postal sector into national networks with poor interoperability and the lack of integration of road, rail and water transport.

In this regard, it called on the Commission to:

continue to propose measures to encourage industry to improve interoperability and accelerate the roll-out of streamlined parcel dispatch and collection processes aimed at reducing costs, increasing economies of scale for delivery operators; explore further the potential of developing European standards to improve integrated tracking systems and to promote the quality, reliability and sustainability of integrated logistic services applied to electronic commerce; create platforms for cooperation and information exchange between delivery operators in order to promptly address the existing gaps in the EU delivery market in terms of innovation, flexibility, stock management, transport, collection and return of parcels, while respecting EU competition law, and discuss the possibility of infrastructure sharing by express and postal mail services to their mutual advantage; work together with business towards the adoption of European standards on addressing and labelling , as well as e-commerce-friendly letter-box standards; improve the interoperability of call-centres dedicated to consumer complaints; explore the possibilities of creating a Pan-European Trustmark for e-Commerce .

Parliament stressed that any new measures taken should be subject to EU data protection legislation.

Monitoring market development and improving regulatory oversight: the resolution noted that that any legislative measures should be carefully assessed in advance in order to avoid impairing the dynamism of the parcel delivery market which should not be hampered by over-regulation.

It called on the Commission to:

monitor the development of the market carefully, in order to identify any areas of potential market failure where further action may become necessary in the future; ensure that the existing regulatory framework is fully transposed, implemented and enforced, with particular attention to the Postal Services Directive, EU competition law, the Directive on Alternative Dispute Resolution, and the Consumer Rights Directive, in particular as regards the formal requirements for distance contracts; submit the promised proposal on the introduction of a uniform VAT declaration as soon as possible.

Lastly, Parliament stressed that an optional European contract law for contracts between undertakings and consumers would result in perceptible simplification and encourage more SMEs to send parcels internationally. It therefore called on the Member States to pursue the current negotiations concerning the European Sales Law in a constructive spirit.

Documents
2014/02/04
   EP - End of procedure in Parliament
2014/02/03
   EP - Debate in Parliament
2014/01/14
   EP - Committee report tabled for plenary, single reading
Details

The Committee on the Internal Market and Consumer Protection adopted the own-initiative report by Pablo ARIAS ECHEVERRÍA (EPP, ES) on an integrated parcel delivery market for the growth of e-commerce in the EU.

The report noted that e-commerce is a channel with enormous potential to combat the economic and financial crisis, strengthen the single market, and create economic growth and employment across the European Union. The Commission’s communication on e-commerce and online services of January 2012 identified the delivery of goods purchased online as one of the top five priorities for boosting e-commerce by 2015, and its importance has been reiterated by the Council and by Parliament. The EU e-commerce market grew by over 20% in 2012 and cross-border e-commerce in particular is predicted to multiply by a factor of four.

Integrated delivery services in Europe: a pillar for the Digital Single Market : Members recalled that the parcel delivery market is undergoing radical transformations, with new providers entering the market, investment oriented towards innovation, and new services emerging. Therefore, efficient and reliable delivery services are a critical pillar of a real and effective digital single market , having a substantial impact in terms of facilitating e-commerce and building trust between sellers and buyers. Delivery concerns (including product returns) and high delivery costs are the top two concerns of consumers in relation to online shopping, contributing to low consumer confidence in cross-border e-commerce.

Members noted cross-border weaknesses in competition between delivery operators in some Member States and deplored the lack of transparency on the pricing conditions and performance of the services concerned.

Putting consumer interests at the heart of the delivery process : Members considered more transparency and better and more readily comparable information on available delivery options, prices and conditions to be paramount for consumers, specifically with respect to the conditions under which consumer orders are shipped and the procedures to follow in case of damage to or loss of goods or delay in their delivery or return. They emphasised that it is necessary to promote measures aimed at ensuring consumer choice at the time of purchase.

In addition, the reliability of delivery services is crucial and it is essential to offer efficient systems that guarantee that parcels effectively reach the requested destination within a reasonable timeframe.

The report pointed out that the high cost of cross-border delivery or delivery to remote areas or the outermost regions is one of the main reasons for consumer dissatisfaction. More affordable delivery options for consumers and sellers, SMEs included, are imperative to ensure a genuinely single market. Geographical coverage and accessibility to universal service for delivery of parcels in rural and remote areas should be improved.

Members stressed the importance of consumers being properly informed on the applicable legislation in this sector. They proposed the creation of a European network of national problem-solving centres like Solvit would help reassure consumers, as would an alert system like RAPEX, which could warn consumers of sites found to be using fraudulent practices .

The Commission is called upon to:

adopt EU guidelines on minimum standards for comparison websites , structured around the core principles of transparency, impartiality, quality, information and user-friendliness; draw up joint delivery service quality indicators, enabling consumers to compare different offers more accurately.

Creating a level playing field for SMEs : SMEs seeking business opportunities across the EU are confronted with higher costs, greater complexity and a lack of transparency when it comes to cross-border delivery. Prices for cross-border delivery are three to five times higher than domestic prices. Effective, simple and affordable delivery systems are a key driver of the sustainability of the business models of SMEs and their ability to supply products to customers.

Towards innovative and interoperable solutions for a truly European delivery market : the report highlighted the fragmentation of the European postal sector into national networks with poor interoperability and the lack of integration of road, rail and water transport.

In this regard, it called on the Commission to:

continue to propose measures to encourage industry to improve interoperability and accelerate the roll-out of streamlined parcel dispatch and collection processes aimed at reducing costs, increasing economies of scale for delivery operators; explore further the potential of developing European standards to improve integrated tracking systems and to promote the quality, reliability and sustainability of integrated logistic services applied to electronic commerce; create platforms for cooperation and information exchange between delivery operators in order to promptly address the existing gaps in the EU delivery market in terms of innovation, flexibility, stock management, transport, collection and return of parcels, while respecting EU competition law, and discuss the possibility of infrastructure sharing by express and postal mail services to their mutual advantage; work together with business towards the adoption of European standards on addressing and labelling, as well as e-commerce-friendly letter-box standards ; improve the interoperability of call-centres dedicated to consumer complaints; explore the possibilities of creating a Pan-European Trustmark for e-Commerce,

Monitoring market development and improving regulatory oversight : the report noted that that any legislative measures should be carefully assessed in advance in order to avoid impairing the dynamism of the parcel delivery market which should not be hampered by over-regulation. The Commission is called upon to:

monitor the development of the market carefully, in order to identify any areas of potential market failure where further action may become necessary in the future; ensure that the existing regulatory framework is fully transposed , implemented and enforced, with particular attention to the Postal Services Directive, EU competition law, the Directive on Alternative Dispute Resolution, and the Consumer Rights Directive, in particular as regards the formal requirements for distance contracts; submit the promised proposal on the introduction of a uniform VAT declaration as soon as possible;

Lastly, Members stressed that an optional European contract law for contracts between undertakings and consumers would result in perceptible simplification and encourage more SMEs to send parcels internationally.

Documents
2013/12/17
   EP - Vote in committee, 1st reading/single reading
2013/11/26
   EP - Committee opinion
Documents
2013/11/06
   EP - Committee opinion
Documents
2013/10/14
   EP - Amendments tabled in committee
Documents
2013/07/26
   EP - Committee draft report
Documents
2013/03/14
   EP - Committee referral announced in Parliament, 1st reading/single reading
2013/03/13
   EP - Committee Opinion
2013/02/22
   SE_PARLIAMENT - Contribution
Documents
2013/01/21
   EP - Committee Opinion
2012/12/18
   EP - Responsible Committee
2012/11/29
   EC - Non-legislative basic document published
Details

PURPOSE: to launch a consultation on the integrated parcel delivery market for the growth of e-commerce in the EU (Commission Green Paper).

BACKGROUND: according to estimations, the EU parcel market was estimated to be worth €42.4 billion in 2008 .

Over the last 5 years, and due to the growth of e-commerce, the business to consumer segment of the parcel and packet markets has grown rapidly. Estimates of today's volumes indicate that this segment now represents between 20 % and 40% of total volumes in more mature e-commerce markets such as the United Kingdom. In the EU-27, only 9% of EU consumers and 18% of EU retailers use cross-border e-commerce. Cross-border delivery is considered to be an obstacle by 57% of retailers10, while 46.7% of consumers declare they worry about the delivery in cross-border transactions.

The Commission's Communication on ecommerce and online services identifies the delivery of goods purchased online as one of the top five priorities to boost e-commerce by 2015 and its importance has been reiterated by the Council of the European Union and the European Parliament in its resolution of 21 September 2010. Delivery is indeed critical as it has a substantial impact on facilitating e-commerce trade and is a key element for building trust between sellers and buyers.

A more appropriate design of the delivery chain for e-commerce in the EU would also have positive implications for a number of policy areas such as cohesion, employment, innovation, environment, competitiveness of European industry to promote investment in a European delivery network which faces intense competition in the international environment.

CONTENT: this Green Paper examines how the e-commerce and delivery markets in Europe are evolving, explores what is required for the creation of a Single Market for delivery, analyses the key challenges for the different actors, and highlights the opportunities for improving the delivery process to the benefits of citizens and businesses, in particular SMEs.

Based on an analysis of the existing regulatory and institutional framework, three main issues are considered instrumental in creating an integrated EU parcel delivery market :

(1) Convenience: greater convenience and transparency for consumers . In this context, the Green Paper focuses on the following points:

greater consideration from the consumers’ point of view through the provisions of information : (i) on delivery options and modalities; (ii) on the quality/performance of delivery (e.g. performance indicators on the speed of delivery, the geographic coverage of the delivery operator, delays, damaged or lost items; (iii) trust labels (e.g. a certificate given by an industry association that the delivery process of an operator can be trusted); better service and more safeguards : the Green Paper examines the need for a new universal service obligation to address the ubiquity, affordability and quality of parcel delivery services as well as ways to reply to concerns and consumer complaints as regards deliveries.

(2) Controlling costs : consumers and e-retailers consider generally current price levels to be too high. By contrast, operators argue that they already work with low margins and that sustainable prices are necessary to ensure their long-term economic viability. There is a need to identify solutions to limit the impact on delivery prices of crossing border and to close the existing gap between the domestic and the cross-border price, where it is not objectively justified.

Consumers often perceive the choice of delivery solutions to be very limited due to the lack of transparency of the market, and the actual state – or perceived state – of competition on the market. Specific ex ante regulatory solutions could be envisaged to the benefit of consumers by making delivery markets competitive on a sustainable basis .

(3) Improving interoperability along the delivery chain : more transparency and better partnerships are required in order to address the need of eretailers, to better understand what constitutes best logistic and delivery practices and to effectively communicate the delivery options that are available to consumers. Successful partnership within and between these two sectors will be decisive for the future of ecommerce.

The Commission services have already launched a number of demonstration actions aiming to improve the competitiveness of the transport and logistics sector in Europe, through the smart use of information technologies and connect, in particular smaller enterprises to digital transport and logistics value chains.

All interested parties are invited to submit their views in response to the consultation at the latest by 15 February 2013 . As a follow up to this Green Paper and on the basis of the responses received, the Commission will identify, in spring 2013, the set of actions to be taken to complete the single market for parcels.

Documents

AmendmentsDossier
140 2013/2043(INI)
2013/09/23 TRAN 55 amendments...
source: PE-516.846
2013/10/11 EMPL 25 amendments...
source: PE-521.543
2013/10/14 IMCO 60 amendments...
source: PE-519.457

History

(these mark the time of scraping, not the official date of the change)

activities
  • date: 2012-11-29T00:00:00 docs: url: http://www.europarl.europa.eu/RegData/docs_autres_institutions/commission_europeenne/com/2012/0698/COM_COM(2012)0698_EN.pdf title: COM(2012)0698 type: Non-legislative basic document published celexid: CELEX:52012DC0698:EN body: EC commission: DG: url: http://ec.europa.eu/dgs/internal_market/ title: Internal Market and Services Commissioner: BARNIER Michel type: Non-legislative basic document published
  • date: 2013-03-14T00:00:00 body: EP type: Committee referral announced in Parliament, 1st reading/single reading committees: body: EP responsible: False committee_full: Culture and Education committee: CULT body: EP responsible: False committee_full: Economic and Monetary Affairs committee: ECON body: EP responsible: False committee: EMPL date: 2013-03-13T00:00:00 committee_full: Employment and Social Affairs rapporteur: group: S&D name: STEINRUCK Jutta body: EP responsible: False committee_full: Environment, Public Health and Food Safety committee: ENVI body: EP shadows: group: S&D name: SEHNALOVÁ Olga group: ALDE name: CREUTZMANN Jürgen group: Verts/ALE name: RÜHLE Heide group: ECR name: BIELAN Adam group: GUE/NGL name: TRIANTAPHYLLIDES Kyriacos group: EFD name: SALVINI Matteo responsible: True committee: IMCO date: 2012-12-18T00:00:00 committee_full: Internal Market and Consumer Protection rapporteur: group: PPE name: ARIAS ECHEVERRÍA Pablo body: EP responsible: False committee_full: Industry, Research and Energy committee: ITRE body: EP responsible: False committee_full: Legal Affairs committee: JURI body: EP responsible: False committee_full: Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs committee: LIBE body: EP responsible: False committee: TRAN date: 2013-01-21T00:00:00 committee_full: Transport and Tourism rapporteur: group: PPE name: DANTIN Michel
  • date: 2013-12-17T00:00:00 body: EP type: Vote in committee, 1st reading/single reading committees: body: EP responsible: False committee_full: Culture and Education committee: CULT body: EP responsible: False committee_full: Economic and Monetary Affairs committee: ECON body: EP responsible: False committee: EMPL date: 2013-03-13T00:00:00 committee_full: Employment and Social Affairs rapporteur: group: S&D name: STEINRUCK Jutta body: EP responsible: False committee_full: Environment, Public Health and Food Safety committee: ENVI body: EP shadows: group: S&D name: SEHNALOVÁ Olga group: ALDE name: CREUTZMANN Jürgen group: Verts/ALE name: RÜHLE Heide group: ECR name: BIELAN Adam group: GUE/NGL name: TRIANTAPHYLLIDES Kyriacos group: EFD name: SALVINI Matteo responsible: True committee: IMCO date: 2012-12-18T00:00:00 committee_full: Internal Market and Consumer Protection rapporteur: group: PPE name: ARIAS ECHEVERRÍA Pablo body: EP responsible: False committee_full: Industry, Research and Energy committee: ITRE body: EP responsible: False committee_full: Legal Affairs committee: JURI body: EP responsible: False committee_full: Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs committee: LIBE body: EP responsible: False committee: TRAN date: 2013-01-21T00:00:00 committee_full: Transport and Tourism rapporteur: group: PPE name: DANTIN Michel
  • date: 2014-01-14T00:00:00 docs: url: http://www.europarl.europa.eu/sides/getDoc.do?type=REPORT&mode=XML&reference=A7-2014-0024&language=EN type: Committee report tabled for plenary, single reading title: A7-0024/2014 body: EP type: Committee report tabled for plenary, single reading
  • date: 2014-02-03T00:00:00 docs: url: http://www.europarl.europa.eu/sides/getDoc.do?secondRef=TOC&language=EN&reference=20140203&type=CRE type: Debate in Parliament title: Debate in Parliament body: EP type: Debate in Parliament
  • date: 2014-02-04T00:00:00 docs: url: http://www.europarl.europa.eu/oeil/popups/sda.do?id=23951&l=en type: Results of vote in Parliament title: Results of vote in Parliament url: http://www.europarl.europa.eu/sides/getDoc.do?type=TA&language=EN&reference=P7-TA-2014-0067 type: Decision by Parliament, 1st reading/single reading title: T7-0067/2014 body: EP type: Results of vote in Parliament
commission
  • body: EC dg: Financial Stability, Financial Services and Capital Markets Union commissioner: BARNIER Michel
committees/0
type
Responsible Committee
body
EP
associated
False
committee_full
Internal Market and Consumer Protection
committee
IMCO
date
2012-12-18T00:00:00
rapporteur
name: ARIAS ECHEVERRÍA Pablo group: European People's Party (Christian Democrats) abbr: PPE
shadows
committees/0
body
EP
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False
committee_full
Culture and Education
committee
CULT
committees/1
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Committee Opinion
body
EP
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committee_full
Economic and Monetary Affairs
committee
ECON
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committees/1
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committee_full
Economic and Monetary Affairs
committee
ECON
committees/2
type
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body
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committee_full
Employment and Social Affairs
committee
EMPL
date
2013-03-13T00:00:00
rapporteur
name: STEINRUCK Jutta group: Progressive Alliance of Socialists and Democrats abbr: S&D
committees/2
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EP
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committee
EMPL
date
2013-03-13T00:00:00
committee_full
Employment and Social Affairs
rapporteur
group: S&D name: STEINRUCK Jutta
committees/3
type
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body
EP
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committee_full
Environment, Public Health and Food Safety
committee
ENVI
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False
committees/3
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False
committee_full
Environment, Public Health and Food Safety
committee
ENVI
committees/4
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body
EP
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False
committee_full
Industry, Research and Energy
committee
ITRE
opinion
False
committees/4
body
EP
shadows
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True
committee
IMCO
date
2012-12-18T00:00:00
committee_full
Internal Market and Consumer Protection
rapporteur
group: PPE name: ARIAS ECHEVERRÍA Pablo
committees/5
type
Committee Opinion
body
EP
associated
False
committee_full
Transport and Tourism
committee
TRAN
date
2013-01-21T00:00:00
rapporteur
name: DANTIN Michel group: European People's Party (Christian Democrats) abbr: PPE
committees/5
body
EP
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False
committee_full
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committee
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committees/6
type
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committee_full
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committee
CULT
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False
committees/6
body
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False
committee_full
Legal Affairs
committee
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committees/7
type
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body
EP
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False
committee_full
Legal Affairs
committee
JURI
opinion
False
committees/7
body
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False
committee_full
Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs
committee
LIBE
committees/8
type
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False
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Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs
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committees/8
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EP
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False
committee
TRAN
date
2013-01-21T00:00:00
committee_full
Transport and Tourism
rapporteur
group: PPE name: DANTIN Michel
docs
  • date: 2013-07-26T00:00:00 docs: url: http://www.europarl.europa.eu/sides/getDoc.do?type=COMPARL&mode=XML&language=EN&reference=PE516.736 title: PE516.736 type: Committee draft report body: EP
  • date: 2013-10-14T00:00:00 docs: url: http://www.europarl.europa.eu/sides/getDoc.do?type=COMPARL&mode=XML&language=EN&reference=PE519.457 title: PE519.457 type: Amendments tabled in committee body: EP
  • date: 2013-11-06T00:00:00 docs: url: http://www.europarl.europa.eu/sides/getDoc.do?type=COMPARL&mode=XML&language=EN&reference=PE514.642&secondRef=02 title: PE514.642 committee: TRAN type: Committee opinion body: EP
  • date: 2013-11-26T00:00:00 docs: url: http://www.europarl.europa.eu/sides/getDoc.do?type=COMPARL&mode=XML&language=EN&reference=PE514.874&secondRef=02 title: PE514.874 committee: EMPL type: Committee opinion body: EP
  • date: 2014-06-18T00:00:00 docs: url: /oeil/spdoc.do?i=23951&j=0&l=en title: SP(2014)414 type: Commission response to text adopted in plenary
  • date: 2013-02-22T00:00:00 docs: url: http://www.connefof.europarl.europa.eu/connefof/app/exp/COM(2012)0698 title: COM(2012)0698 type: Contribution body: SE_PARLIAMENT
events
  • date: 2012-11-29T00:00:00 type: Non-legislative basic document published body: EC docs: url: http://www.europarl.europa.eu/RegData/docs_autres_institutions/commission_europeenne/com/2012/0698/COM_COM(2012)0698_EN.pdf title: COM(2012)0698 url: https://eur-lex.europa.eu/smartapi/cgi/sga_doc?smartapi!celexplus!prod!DocNumber&lg=EN&type_doc=COMfinal&an_doc=2012&nu_doc=698 title: EUR-Lex summary: PURPOSE: to launch a consultation on the integrated parcel delivery market for the growth of e-commerce in the EU (Commission Green Paper). BACKGROUND: according to estimations, the EU parcel market was estimated to be worth €42.4 billion in 2008 . Over the last 5 years, and due to the growth of e-commerce, the business to consumer segment of the parcel and packet markets has grown rapidly. Estimates of today's volumes indicate that this segment now represents between 20 % and 40% of total volumes in more mature e-commerce markets such as the United Kingdom. In the EU-27, only 9% of EU consumers and 18% of EU retailers use cross-border e-commerce. Cross-border delivery is considered to be an obstacle by 57% of retailers10, while 46.7% of consumers declare they worry about the delivery in cross-border transactions. The Commission's Communication on ecommerce and online services identifies the delivery of goods purchased online as one of the top five priorities to boost e-commerce by 2015 and its importance has been reiterated by the Council of the European Union and the European Parliament in its resolution of 21 September 2010. Delivery is indeed critical as it has a substantial impact on facilitating e-commerce trade and is a key element for building trust between sellers and buyers. A more appropriate design of the delivery chain for e-commerce in the EU would also have positive implications for a number of policy areas such as cohesion, employment, innovation, environment, competitiveness of European industry to promote investment in a European delivery network which faces intense competition in the international environment. CONTENT: this Green Paper examines how the e-commerce and delivery markets in Europe are evolving, explores what is required for the creation of a Single Market for delivery, analyses the key challenges for the different actors, and highlights the opportunities for improving the delivery process to the benefits of citizens and businesses, in particular SMEs. Based on an analysis of the existing regulatory and institutional framework, three main issues are considered instrumental in creating an integrated EU parcel delivery market : (1) Convenience: greater convenience and transparency for consumers . In this context, the Green Paper focuses on the following points: greater consideration from the consumers’ point of view through the provisions of information : (i) on delivery options and modalities; (ii) on the quality/performance of delivery (e.g. performance indicators on the speed of delivery, the geographic coverage of the delivery operator, delays, damaged or lost items; (iii) trust labels (e.g. a certificate given by an industry association that the delivery process of an operator can be trusted); better service and more safeguards : the Green Paper examines the need for a new universal service obligation to address the ubiquity, affordability and quality of parcel delivery services as well as ways to reply to concerns and consumer complaints as regards deliveries. (2) Controlling costs : consumers and e-retailers consider generally current price levels to be too high. By contrast, operators argue that they already work with low margins and that sustainable prices are necessary to ensure their long-term economic viability. There is a need to identify solutions to limit the impact on delivery prices of crossing border and to close the existing gap between the domestic and the cross-border price, where it is not objectively justified. Consumers often perceive the choice of delivery solutions to be very limited due to the lack of transparency of the market, and the actual state – or perceived state – of competition on the market. Specific ex ante regulatory solutions could be envisaged to the benefit of consumers by making delivery markets competitive on a sustainable basis . (3) Improving interoperability along the delivery chain : more transparency and better partnerships are required in order to address the need of eretailers, to better understand what constitutes best logistic and delivery practices and to effectively communicate the delivery options that are available to consumers. Successful partnership within and between these two sectors will be decisive for the future of ecommerce. The Commission services have already launched a number of demonstration actions aiming to improve the competitiveness of the transport and logistics sector in Europe, through the smart use of information technologies and connect, in particular smaller enterprises to digital transport and logistics value chains. All interested parties are invited to submit their views in response to the consultation at the latest by 15 February 2013 . As a follow up to this Green Paper and on the basis of the responses received, the Commission will identify, in spring 2013, the set of actions to be taken to complete the single market for parcels.
  • date: 2013-03-14T00:00:00 type: Committee referral announced in Parliament, 1st reading/single reading body: EP
  • date: 2013-12-17T00:00:00 type: Vote in committee, 1st reading/single reading body: EP
  • date: 2014-01-14T00:00:00 type: Committee report tabled for plenary, single reading body: EP docs: url: http://www.europarl.europa.eu/sides/getDoc.do?type=REPORT&mode=XML&reference=A7-2014-0024&language=EN title: A7-0024/2014 summary: The Committee on the Internal Market and Consumer Protection adopted the own-initiative report by Pablo ARIAS ECHEVERRÍA (EPP, ES) on an integrated parcel delivery market for the growth of e-commerce in the EU. The report noted that e-commerce is a channel with enormous potential to combat the economic and financial crisis, strengthen the single market, and create economic growth and employment across the European Union. The Commission’s communication on e-commerce and online services of January 2012 identified the delivery of goods purchased online as one of the top five priorities for boosting e-commerce by 2015, and its importance has been reiterated by the Council and by Parliament. The EU e-commerce market grew by over 20% in 2012 and cross-border e-commerce in particular is predicted to multiply by a factor of four. Integrated delivery services in Europe: a pillar for the Digital Single Market : Members recalled that the parcel delivery market is undergoing radical transformations, with new providers entering the market, investment oriented towards innovation, and new services emerging. Therefore, efficient and reliable delivery services are a critical pillar of a real and effective digital single market , having a substantial impact in terms of facilitating e-commerce and building trust between sellers and buyers. Delivery concerns (including product returns) and high delivery costs are the top two concerns of consumers in relation to online shopping, contributing to low consumer confidence in cross-border e-commerce. Members noted cross-border weaknesses in competition between delivery operators in some Member States and deplored the lack of transparency on the pricing conditions and performance of the services concerned. Putting consumer interests at the heart of the delivery process : Members considered more transparency and better and more readily comparable information on available delivery options, prices and conditions to be paramount for consumers, specifically with respect to the conditions under which consumer orders are shipped and the procedures to follow in case of damage to or loss of goods or delay in their delivery or return. They emphasised that it is necessary to promote measures aimed at ensuring consumer choice at the time of purchase. In addition, the reliability of delivery services is crucial and it is essential to offer efficient systems that guarantee that parcels effectively reach the requested destination within a reasonable timeframe. The report pointed out that the high cost of cross-border delivery or delivery to remote areas or the outermost regions is one of the main reasons for consumer dissatisfaction. More affordable delivery options for consumers and sellers, SMEs included, are imperative to ensure a genuinely single market. Geographical coverage and accessibility to universal service for delivery of parcels in rural and remote areas should be improved. Members stressed the importance of consumers being properly informed on the applicable legislation in this sector. They proposed the creation of a European network of national problem-solving centres like Solvit would help reassure consumers, as would an alert system like RAPEX, which could warn consumers of sites found to be using fraudulent practices . The Commission is called upon to: adopt EU guidelines on minimum standards for comparison websites , structured around the core principles of transparency, impartiality, quality, information and user-friendliness; draw up joint delivery service quality indicators, enabling consumers to compare different offers more accurately. Creating a level playing field for SMEs : SMEs seeking business opportunities across the EU are confronted with higher costs, greater complexity and a lack of transparency when it comes to cross-border delivery. Prices for cross-border delivery are three to five times higher than domestic prices. Effective, simple and affordable delivery systems are a key driver of the sustainability of the business models of SMEs and their ability to supply products to customers. Towards innovative and interoperable solutions for a truly European delivery market : the report highlighted the fragmentation of the European postal sector into national networks with poor interoperability and the lack of integration of road, rail and water transport. In this regard, it called on the Commission to: continue to propose measures to encourage industry to improve interoperability and accelerate the roll-out of streamlined parcel dispatch and collection processes aimed at reducing costs, increasing economies of scale for delivery operators; explore further the potential of developing European standards to improve integrated tracking systems and to promote the quality, reliability and sustainability of integrated logistic services applied to electronic commerce; create platforms for cooperation and information exchange between delivery operators in order to promptly address the existing gaps in the EU delivery market in terms of innovation, flexibility, stock management, transport, collection and return of parcels, while respecting EU competition law, and discuss the possibility of infrastructure sharing by express and postal mail services to their mutual advantage; work together with business towards the adoption of European standards on addressing and labelling, as well as e-commerce-friendly letter-box standards ; improve the interoperability of call-centres dedicated to consumer complaints; explore the possibilities of creating a Pan-European Trustmark for e-Commerce, Monitoring market development and improving regulatory oversight : the report noted that that any legislative measures should be carefully assessed in advance in order to avoid impairing the dynamism of the parcel delivery market which should not be hampered by over-regulation. The Commission is called upon to: monitor the development of the market carefully, in order to identify any areas of potential market failure where further action may become necessary in the future; ensure that the existing regulatory framework is fully transposed , implemented and enforced, with particular attention to the Postal Services Directive, EU competition law, the Directive on Alternative Dispute Resolution, and the Consumer Rights Directive, in particular as regards the formal requirements for distance contracts; submit the promised proposal on the introduction of a uniform VAT declaration as soon as possible; Lastly, Members stressed that an optional European contract law for contracts between undertakings and consumers would result in perceptible simplification and encourage more SMEs to send parcels internationally.
  • date: 2014-02-03T00:00:00 type: Debate in Parliament body: EP docs: url: http://www.europarl.europa.eu/sides/getDoc.do?secondRef=TOC&language=EN&reference=20140203&type=CRE title: Debate in Parliament
  • date: 2014-02-04T00:00:00 type: Results of vote in Parliament body: EP docs: url: https://oeil.secure.europarl.europa.eu/oeil/popups/sda.do?id=23951&l=en title: Results of vote in Parliament
  • date: 2014-02-04T00:00:00 type: Decision by Parliament, 1st reading/single reading body: EP docs: url: http://www.europarl.europa.eu/sides/getDoc.do?type=TA&language=EN&reference=P7-TA-2014-0067 title: T7-0067/2014 summary: The European Parliament adopted a resolution on an integrated parcel delivery market for the growth of e-commerce in the EU in response to a European Commission Green Paper on the issue. Parliament underlined that e-commerce is a channel with enormous potential to combat the economic and financial crisis, strengthen the single market, and create economic growth and employment across the European Union. The Commission’s communication on e-commerce and online services of January 2012 and its December 2013 communication ‘ A roadmap for completing the single market for parcel delivery: Build trust in delivery services and encourage online sales ’, identified the delivery of goods purchased online as one of the top five priorities for boosting e-commerce by 2015, and its importance has been reiterated by the Council and by Parliament. The EU e-commerce market grew by over 20% in 2012 and cross-border e-commerce in particular is predicted to multiply by a factor of four. Integrated delivery services in Europe: a pillar for the Digital Single Market: Parliament recalled that the parcel delivery market is undergoing radical transformations, with new providers entering the market, investment oriented towards innovation, and new services emerging. Therefore, efficient and reliable delivery services are a critical pillar of a real and effective digital single market, having a substantial impact in terms of facilitating e-commerce and building trust between sellers and buyers. Parliament also noted that delivery concerns (including product returns) and high delivery costs are the top two concerns of consumers in relation to online shopping , contributing to low consumer confidence in cross-border e-commerce. Parliament noted cross-border weaknesses in competition between delivery operators in some Member States and deplored the lack of transparency on the pricing conditions and performance of the services concerned. Putting consumer interests at the heart of the delivery process: Parliament considered more transparency and better and more readily comparable information on available delivery options, prices and conditions to be paramount for consumers, specifically with respect to the conditions under which consumer orders are shipped and the procedures to follow in case of damage to or loss of goods or delay in their delivery or return. It emphasised that it is necessary to promote measures aimed at ensuring consumer choice at the time of purchase. In this regard, Parliament noted the significant gap between consumer expectations and the availability of convenient, innovative services such as relay points or parcel kiosks, or terminals, round-the-clock services available at any time, track-and-trace solutions, consumer-friendly delivery places and times, or easy return policies. It stressed that reliability of delivery services is crucial and that it is essential to offer efficient systems that guarantee that parcels effectively reach the requested destination within a reasonable timeframe. The resolution pointed out that the high cost of cross-border delivery or delivery to remote areas or the outermost regions is one of the main reasons for consumer dissatisfaction. More affordable delivery options for consumers and sellers, SMEs included, are imperative to ensure a genuinely single market. Geographical coverage and accessibility to universal service for delivery of parcels in rural and remote areas should be improved. Parliament also stressed the importance of consumers being properly informed on the applicable legislation in this sector . It proposed the creation of a European network of national problem-solving centres like Solvit would help reassure consumers, as would an alert system like RAPEX, which could warn consumers of sites found to be using fraudulent practices . It called on the Commission to: adopt EU guidelines on minimum standards for comparison websites, structured around the core principles of transparency, impartiality, quality, information and user-friendliness; draw up joint delivery service quality indicators, enabling consumers to compare different offers more accurately; provide for a stable and coherent social dimension, where delivery services are subject to compliance with labour rights, terms of employment and remuneration. Creating a level playing field for SMEs: Parliament emphasised that SMEs seeking business opportunities across the EU are confronted with higher costs, greater complexity and a lack of transparency when it comes to cross-border delivery. Prices for cross-border delivery are three to five times higher than domestic prices. Effective, simple and affordable delivery systems are a key driver of the sustainability of the business models of SMEs and their ability to supply products to customers. Towards innovative and interoperable solutions for a truly European delivery market: the resolution highlighted the fragmentation of the European postal sector into national networks with poor interoperability and the lack of integration of road, rail and water transport. In this regard, it called on the Commission to: continue to propose measures to encourage industry to improve interoperability and accelerate the roll-out of streamlined parcel dispatch and collection processes aimed at reducing costs, increasing economies of scale for delivery operators; explore further the potential of developing European standards to improve integrated tracking systems and to promote the quality, reliability and sustainability of integrated logistic services applied to electronic commerce; create platforms for cooperation and information exchange between delivery operators in order to promptly address the existing gaps in the EU delivery market in terms of innovation, flexibility, stock management, transport, collection and return of parcels, while respecting EU competition law, and discuss the possibility of infrastructure sharing by express and postal mail services to their mutual advantage; work together with business towards the adoption of European standards on addressing and labelling , as well as e-commerce-friendly letter-box standards; improve the interoperability of call-centres dedicated to consumer complaints; explore the possibilities of creating a Pan-European Trustmark for e-Commerce . Parliament stressed that any new measures taken should be subject to EU data protection legislation. Monitoring market development and improving regulatory oversight: the resolution noted that that any legislative measures should be carefully assessed in advance in order to avoid impairing the dynamism of the parcel delivery market which should not be hampered by over-regulation. It called on the Commission to: monitor the development of the market carefully, in order to identify any areas of potential market failure where further action may become necessary in the future; ensure that the existing regulatory framework is fully transposed, implemented and enforced, with particular attention to the Postal Services Directive, EU competition law, the Directive on Alternative Dispute Resolution, and the Consumer Rights Directive, in particular as regards the formal requirements for distance contracts; submit the promised proposal on the introduction of a uniform VAT declaration as soon as possible. Lastly, Parliament stressed that an optional European contract law for contracts between undertakings and consumers would result in perceptible simplification and encourage more SMEs to send parcels internationally. It therefore called on the Member States to pursue the current negotiations concerning the European Sales Law in a constructive spirit.
  • date: 2014-02-04T00:00:00 type: End of procedure in Parliament body: EP
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  • The Committee on the Internal Market and Consumer Protection adopted the own-initiative report by Pablo ARIAS ECHEVERRÍA (EPP, ES) on an integrated parcel delivery market for the growth of e-commerce in the EU.

    The report noted that e-commerce is a channel with enormous potential to combat the economic and financial crisis, strengthen the single market, and create economic growth and employment across the European Union. The Commission’s communication on e-commerce and online services of January 2012 identified the delivery of goods purchased online as one of the top five priorities for boosting e-commerce by 2015, and its importance has been reiterated by the Council and by Parliament. The EU e-commerce market grew by over 20% in 2012 and cross-border e-commerce in particular is predicted to multiply by a factor of four.

    Integrated delivery services in Europe: a pillar for the Digital Single Market: Members recalled that the parcel delivery market is undergoing radical transformations, with new providers entering the market, investment oriented towards innovation, and new services emerging. Therefore, efficient and reliable delivery services are a critical pillar of a real and effective digital single market, having a substantial impact in terms of facilitating e-commerce and building trust between sellers and buyers. Delivery concerns (including product returns) and high delivery costs are the top two concerns of consumers in relation to online shopping, contributing to low consumer confidence in cross-border e-commerce.

    Members noted cross-border weaknesses in competition between delivery operators in some Member States and deplored the lack of transparency on the pricing conditions and performance of the services concerned.

    Putting consumer interests at the heart of the delivery process: Members considered more transparency and better and more readily comparable information on available delivery options, prices and conditions to be paramount for consumers, specifically with respect to the conditions under which consumer orders are shipped and the procedures to follow in case of damage to or loss of goods or delay in their delivery or return. They emphasised that it is necessary to promote measures aimed at ensuring consumer choice at the time of purchase.

    In addition, the reliability of delivery services is crucial and it is essential to offer efficient systems that guarantee that parcels effectively reach the requested destination within a reasonable timeframe.

    The report pointed out that the high cost of cross-border delivery or delivery to remote areas or the outermost regions is one of the main reasons for consumer dissatisfaction. More affordable delivery options for consumers and sellers, SMEs included, are imperative to ensure a genuinely single market. Geographical coverage and accessibility to universal service for delivery of parcels in rural and remote areas should be improved.

    Members stressed the importance of consumers being properly informed on the applicable legislation in this sector. They proposed the creation of a European network of national problem-solving centres like Solvit would help reassure consumers, as would an alert system like RAPEX, which could warn consumers of sites found to be using fraudulent practices.

    The Commission is called upon to:

    • adopt EU guidelines on minimum standards for comparison websites, structured around the core principles of transparency, impartiality, quality, information and user-friendliness;
    • draw up joint delivery service quality indicators, enabling consumers to compare different offers more accurately.

    Creating a level playing field for SMEs: SMEs seeking business opportunities across the EU are confronted with higher costs, greater complexity and a lack of transparency when it comes to cross-border delivery. Prices for cross-border delivery are three to five times higher than domestic prices. Effective, simple and affordable delivery systems are a key driver of the sustainability of the business models of SMEs and their ability to supply products to customers.

    Towards innovative and interoperable solutions for a truly European delivery market: the report highlighted the fragmentation of the European postal sector into national networks with poor interoperability and the lack of integration of road, rail and water transport.

    In this regard, it called on the Commission to:

    • continue to propose measures to encourage industry to improve interoperability and accelerate the roll-out of streamlined parcel dispatch and collection processes aimed at reducing costs, increasing economies of scale for delivery operators;
    • explore further the potential of developing European standards to improve integrated tracking systems and to promote the quality, reliability and sustainability of integrated logistic services applied to electronic commerce;
    • create platforms for cooperation and information exchange between delivery operators in order to promptly address the existing gaps in the EU delivery market in terms of innovation, flexibility, stock management, transport, collection and return of parcels, while respecting EU competition law, and discuss the possibility of infrastructure sharing by express and postal mail services to their mutual advantage;
    • work together with business towards the adoption of European standards on addressing and labelling, as well as e-commerce-friendly letter-box standards;
    • improve the interoperability of call-centres dedicated to consumer complaints;
    • explore the possibilities of creating a Pan-European Trustmark for e-Commerce,

    Monitoring market development and improving regulatory oversight: the report noted that that any legislative measures should be carefully assessed in advance in order to avoid impairing the dynamism of the parcel delivery market which should not be hampered by over-regulation. The Commission is called upon to:

    • monitor the development of the market carefully, in order to identify any areas of potential market failure where further action may become necessary in the future;
    • ensure that the existing regulatory framework is fully transposed, implemented and enforced, with particular attention to the Postal Services Directive, EU competition law, the Directive on Alternative Dispute Resolution, and the Consumer Rights Directive, in particular as regards the formal requirements for distance contracts;
    • submit the promised proposal on the introduction of a uniform VAT declaration as soon as possible;

    Lastly, Members stressed that an optional European contract law for contracts between undertakings and consumers would result in perceptible simplification and encourage more SMEs to send parcels internationally.

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  • PURPOSE: to launch a consultation on the integrated parcel delivery market for the growth of e-commerce in the EU (Commission Green Paper).

    BACKGROUND: according to estimations, the EU parcel market was estimated to be worth €42.4 billion in 2008.

    Over the last 5 years, and due to the growth of e-commerce, the business to consumer segment of the parcel and packet markets has grown rapidly. Estimates of today's volumes indicate that this segment now represents between 20 % and 40% of total volumes in more mature e-commerce markets such as the United Kingdom. In the EU-27, only 9% of EU consumers and 18% of EU retailers use cross-border e-commerce. Cross-border delivery is considered to be an obstacle by 57% of retailers10, while 46.7% of consumers declare they worry about the delivery in cross-border transactions.

    The Commission's Communication on ecommerce and online services identifies the delivery of goods purchased online as one of the top five priorities to boost e-commerce by 2015 and its importance has been reiterated by the Council of the European Union and the European Parliament in its resolution of 21 September 2010. Delivery is indeed critical as it has a substantial impact on facilitating e-commerce trade and is a key element for building trust between sellers and buyers.

    A more appropriate design of the delivery chain for e-commerce in the EU would also have positive implications for a number of policy areas such as cohesion, employment, innovation, environment, competitiveness of European industry to promote investment in a European delivery network which faces intense competition in the international environment.

    CONTENT: this Green Paper examines how the e-commerce and delivery markets in Europe are evolving, explores what is required for the creation of a Single Market for delivery, analyses the key challenges for the different actors, and highlights the opportunities for improving the delivery process to the benefits of citizens and businesses, in particular SMEs.

    Based on an analysis of the existing regulatory and institutional framework, three main issues are considered instrumental in creating an integrated EU parcel delivery market :

    (1) Convenience: greater convenience and transparency for consumers. In this context, the Green Paper focuses on the following points:

    • greater consideration from the consumers’ point of view through the provisions of information: (i) on delivery options and modalities; (ii) on the quality/performance of delivery (e.g. performance indicators on the speed of delivery, the geographic coverage of the delivery operator, delays, damaged or lost items; (iii) trust labels (e.g. a certificate given by an industry association that the delivery process of an operator can be trusted);
    • better service and more safeguards: the Green Paper examines the need for a new universal service obligation to address the ubiquity, affordability and quality of parcel delivery services as well as ways to reply to concerns and consumer complaints as regards deliveries.

    (2) Controlling costs: consumers and e-retailers consider generally current price levels to be too high. By contrast, operators argue that they already work with low margins and that sustainable prices are necessary to ensure their long-term economic viability. There is a need to identify solutions to limit the impact on delivery prices of crossing border and to close the existing gap between the domestic and the cross-border price, where it is not objectively justified.

    Consumers often perceive the choice of delivery solutions to be very limited due to the lack of transparency of the market, and the actual state – or perceived state – of competition on the market. Specific ex ante regulatory solutions could be envisaged to the benefit of consumers by making delivery markets competitive on a sustainable basis.

    (3) Improving interoperability along the delivery chain: more transparency and better partnerships are required in order to address the need of eretailers, to better understand what constitutes best logistic and delivery practices and to effectively communicate the delivery options that are available to consumers. Successful partnership within and between these two sectors will be decisive for the future of ecommerce.

    The Commission services have already launched a number of demonstration actions aiming to improve the competitiveness of the transport and logistics sector in Europe, through the smart use of information technologies and connect, in particular smaller enterprises to digital transport and logistics value chains.

    All interested parties are invited to submit their views in response to the consultation at the latest by 15 February 2013. As a follow up to this Green Paper and on the basis of the responses received, the Commission will identify, in spring 2013, the set of actions to be taken to complete the single market for parcels.

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  • PURPOSE: to launch a consultation on the integrated parcel delivery market for the growth of e-commerce in the EU (Commission Green Paper).

    BACKGROUND: according to estimations, the EU parcel market was estimated to be worth €42.4 billion in 2008.

    Over the last 5 years, and due to the growth of e-commerce, the business to consumer segment of the parcel and packet markets has grown rapidly. Estimates of today's volumes indicate that this segment now represents between 20 % and 40% of total volumes in more mature e-commerce markets such as the United Kingdom. In the EU-27, only 9% of EU consumers and 18% of EU retailers use cross-border e-commerce. Cross-border delivery is considered to be an obstacle by 57% of retailers10, while 46.7% of consumers declare they worry about the delivery in cross-border transactions.

    The Commission's Communication on ecommerce and online services identifies the delivery of goods purchased online as one of the top five priorities to boost e-commerce by 2015 and its importance has been reiterated by the Council of the European Union and the European Parliament in its resolution of 21 September 2010. Delivery is indeed critical as it has a substantial impact on facilitating e-commerce trade and is a key element for building trust between sellers and buyers.

    A more appropriate design of the delivery chain for e-commerce in the EU would also have positive implications for a number of policy areas such as cohesion, employment, innovation, environment, competitiveness of European industry to promote investment in a European delivery network which faces intense competition in the international environment.

    CONTENT: this Green Paper examines how the e-commerce and delivery markets in Europe are evolving, explores what is required for the creation of a Single Market for delivery, analyses the key challenges for the different actors, and highlights the opportunities for improving the delivery process to the benefits of citizens and businesses, in particular SMEs.

    Based on an analysis of the existing regulatory and institutional framework, three main issues are considered instrumental in creating an integrated EU parcel delivery market :

    (1) Convenience: greater convenience and transparency for consumers. In this context, the Green Paper focuses on the following points:

    • greater consideration from the consumers’ point of view through the provisions of information: (i) on delivery options and modalities; (ii) on the quality/performance of delivery (e.g. performance indicators on the speed of delivery, the geographic coverage of the delivery operator, delays, damaged or lost items; (iii) trust labels (e.g. a certificate given by an industry association that the delivery process of an operator can be trusted);
    • better service and more safeguards: the Green Paper examines the need for a new universal service obligation to address the ubiquity, affordability and quality of parcel delivery services as well as ways to reply to concerns and consumer complaints as regards deliveries.

    (2) Controlling costs: consumers and e-retailers consider generally current price levels to be too high. By contrast, operators argue that they already work with low margins and that sustainable prices are necessary to ensure their long-term economic viability. There is a need to identify solutions to limit the impact on delivery prices of crossing border and to close the existing gap between the domestic and the cross-border price, where it is not objectively justified.

    Consumers often perceive the choice of delivery solutions to be very limited due to the lack of transparency of the market, and the actual state – or perceived state – of competition on the market. Specific ex ante regulatory solutions could be envisaged to the benefit of consumers by making delivery markets competitive on a sustainable basis.

    (3) Improving interoperability along the delivery chain: more transparency and better partnerships are required in order to address the need of eretailers, to better understand what constitutes best logistic and delivery practices and to effectively communicate the delivery options that are available to consumers. Successful partnership within and between these two sectors will be decisive for the future of ecommerce.

    The Commission services have already launched a number of demonstration actions aiming to improve the competitiveness of the transport and logistics sector in Europe, through the smart use of information technologies and connect, in particular smaller enterprises to digital transport and logistics value chains.

    All interested parties are invited to submit their views in response to the consultation at the latest by 15 February 2013. As a follow up to this Green Paper and on the basis of the responses received, the Commission will identify, in spring 2013, the set of actions to be taken to complete the single market for parcels.

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  • PURPOSE: to launch a consultation on the integrated parcel delivery market for the growth of e-commerce in the EU (Commission Green Paper).

    BACKGROUND: according to estimations, the EU parcel market was estimated to be worth €42.4 billion in 2008.

    Over the last 5 years, and due to the growth of e-commerce, the business to consumer segment of the parcel and packet markets has grown rapidly. Estimates of today's volumes indicate that this segment now represents between 20 % and 40% of total volumes in more mature e-commerce markets such as the United Kingdom. In the EU-27, only 9% of EU consumers and 18% of EU retailers use cross-border e-commerce. Cross-border delivery is considered to be an obstacle by 57% of retailers10, while 46.7% of consumers declare they worry about the delivery in cross-border transactions.

    The Commission's Communication on ecommerce and online services identifies the delivery of goods purchased online as one of the top five priorities to boost e-commerce by 2015 and its importance has been reiterated by the Council of the European Union and the European Parliament in its resolution of 21 September 2010. Delivery is indeed critical as it has a substantial impact on facilitating e-commerce trade and is a key element for building trust between sellers and buyers.

    A more appropriate design of the delivery chain for e-commerce in the EU would also have positive implications for a number of policy areas such as cohesion, employment, innovation, environment, competitiveness of European industry to promote investment in a European delivery network which faces intense competition in the international environment.

    CONTENT: this Green Paper examines how the e-commerce and delivery markets in Europe are evolving, explores what is required for the creation of a Single Market for delivery, analyses the key challenges for the different actors, and highlights the opportunities for improving the delivery process to the benefits of citizens and businesses, in particular SMEs.

    Based on an analysis of the existing regulatory and institutional framework, three main issues are considered instrumental in creating an integrated EU parcel delivery market :

    (1) Convenience: greater convenience and transparency for consumers. In this context, the Green Paper focuses on the following points:

    • greater consideration from the consumers’ point of view through the provisions of information: (i) on delivery options and modalities; (ii) on the quality/performance of delivery (e.g. performance indicators on the speed of delivery, the geographic coverage of the delivery operator, delays, damaged or lost items; (iii) trust labels (e.g. a certificate given by an industry association that the delivery process of an operator can be trusted);
    • better service and more safeguards: the Green Paper examines the need for a new universal service obligation to address the ubiquity, affordability and quality of parcel delivery services as well as ways to reply to concerns and consumer complaints as regards deliveries.

    (2) Controlling costs: consumers and e-retailers consider generally current price levels to be too high. By contrast, operators argue that they already work with low margins and that sustainable prices are necessary to ensure their long-term economic viability. There is a need to identify solutions to limit the impact on delivery prices of crossing border and to close the existing gap between the domestic and the cross-border price, where it is not objectively justified.

    Consumers often perceive the choice of delivery solutions to be very limited due to the lack of transparency of the market, and the actual state – or perceived state – of competition on the market. Specific ex ante regulatory solutions could be envisaged to the benefit of consumers by making delivery markets competitive on a sustainable basis.

    (3) Improving interoperability along the delivery chain: more transparency and better partnerships are required in order to address the need of eretailers, to better understand what constitutes best logistic and delivery practices and to effectively communicate the delivery options that are available to consumers. Successful partnership within and between these two sectors will be decisive for the future of ecommerce.

    The Commission services have already launched a number of demonstration actions aiming to improve the competitiveness of the transport and logistics sector in Europe, through the smart use of information technologies and connect, in particular smaller enterprises to digital transport and logistics value chains.

    All interested parties are invited to submit their views in response to the consultation at the latest by 15 February 2013. As a follow up to this Green Paper and on the basis of the responses received, the Commission will identify, in spring 2013, the set of actions to be taken to complete the single market for parcels.

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BIELAN Adam
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  • date: 2012-11-29T00:00:00 docs: url: http://www.europarl.europa.eu/registre/docs_autres_institutions/commission_europeenne/com/2012/0698/COM_COM(2012)0698_EN.pdf celexid: CELEX:52012DC0698:EN type: Non-legislative basic document published title: COM(2012)0698 body: EC type: Non-legislative basic document commission: DG: url: http://ec.europa.eu/dgs/internal_market/ title: Internal Market and Services Commissioner: BARNIER Michel
  • date: 2013-03-14T00:00:00 body: EP type: Committee referral announced in Parliament, 1st reading/single reading committees: body: EP responsible: False committee_full: Culture and Education committee: CULT body: EP responsible: False committee_full: Economic and Monetary Affairs committee: ECON body: EP responsible: False committee_full: Employment and Social Affairs committee: EMPL body: EP responsible: False committee_full: Environment, Public Health and Food Safety committee: ENVI body: EP shadows: group: S&D name: SEHNALOVÁ Olga group: ALDE name: CREUTZMANN Jürgen group: GUE/NGL name: TRIANTAPHYLLIDES Kyriacos responsible: True committee: IMCO date: 2012-12-18T00:00:00 committee_full: Internal Market and Consumer Protection rapporteur: group: EPP name: ARIAS ECHEVERRÍA Pablo body: EP responsible: False committee_full: Industry, Research and Energy committee: ITRE body: EP responsible: False committee_full: Legal Affairs committee: JURI body: EP responsible: False committee_full: Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs committee: LIBE body: EP responsible: False committee: TRAN date: 2013-01-21T00:00:00 committee_full: Transport and Tourism rapporteur: group: EPP name: DANTIN Michel
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  • body: EP responsible: False committee_full: Culture and Education committee: CULT
  • body: EP responsible: False committee_full: Economic and Monetary Affairs committee: ECON
  • body: EP responsible: False committee_full: Employment and Social Affairs committee: EMPL
  • body: EP responsible: False committee_full: Environment, Public Health and Food Safety committee: ENVI
  • body: EP shadows: group: S&D name: SEHNALOVÁ Olga group: ALDE name: CREUTZMANN Jürgen group: GUE/NGL name: TRIANTAPHYLLIDES Kyriacos responsible: True committee: IMCO date: 2012-12-18T00:00:00 committee_full: Internal Market and Consumer Protection rapporteur: group: EPP name: ARIAS ECHEVERRÍA Pablo
  • body: EP responsible: False committee_full: Industry, Research and Energy committee: ITRE
  • body: EP responsible: False committee_full: Legal Affairs committee: JURI
  • body: EP responsible: False committee_full: Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs committee: LIBE
  • body: EP responsible: False committee: TRAN date: 2013-01-21T00:00:00 committee_full: Transport and Tourism rapporteur: group: EPP name: DANTIN Michel
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other
  • body: EC dg: url: http://ec.europa.eu/dgs/internal_market/ title: Internal Market and Services commissioner: BARNIER Michel
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reference
2013/2043(INI)
title
Integrated parcel delivery market for the growth of e-commerce in the EU
legal_basis
Rules of Procedure of the European Parliament EP 048
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