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Choice In eCommerce hands over petition to EC

Choice in eCommerce has handed over a petition yesterday, which was signed by more than 14,000 online merchants from all over Europe, to Olli Rehn, Vice-President of the European Commission. The petition calls on manufacturers and brand owners to refrain from imposing sales restrictions or prohibitions on online merchants.

The situation now is that several manufacturers forbid online merchants from freely using the internet, e.g. to sell their goods through online marketplaces. Choice in eCommerce started an online survey about this subject two months ago and we asked are our readers to fill this one out. Now we have some results from this survey, which we’re happy to share with you.

Almost six in ten respondents have been impacted by sales restrictions one way or another. This year 15% of online sellers began to be affected by these restrictions, while more than a quarter isn’t that confident about their future. About 6% of them had fire some of their employees due to the impact of these sales band, 5.4% of all respondents even face bankruptcy threats.

Higher prices due to manufacturers establishing monopolies
A lot of online retailers are concerned about the decrease of diversity in online trade and about two in three respondents worry about manufacturers establishing online monopolies. Most of them think that these monopolies will lead to higher prices for consumers.

More than half of all online merchants surveyed think that innovation in ecommerce will decline and that consumers won’t be able to find certain products online anymore. And data from the survey also shows that manufacturers do not only impose sales bans in their sellers’ domestic markets, but they also prevent cross-border trade. And that’s just exactly what the European Commission is fighting against, by promoting a European Single Market. The EC is currently investigating online sales restrictions. Hopefully, the survey results from Choice in eCommerce can help them with fighting against these sales bans.

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