Tuesday, 09 June 2020

Press release: HCC e-commerce sector inquiry: public consultation and teleconference

Subject: Teleconference/Public consultation in the context of the HCC e-commerce sector inquiry

The Hellenic Competition Commission (‘HCC’) in the context of the first phase (Phase A’) of its sector inquiry into e-commerce has successfully completed its teleconference/public consultation with various stakeholders. The teleconference followed the written submissions by the companies and institutions concerned, and served as an interactive forum for exchanging views on the competitive conditions prevailing in the e-commerce sector.

The teleconference, held via a private live streaming studio in FULLHD, is part of the broader reform of the HCC’s digital communication. In enhancing HCC’s digital communication, the authority hopes to ensure a more direct contact with businesses as well as consumers and citizens for the benefit of Greece’seconomic growth.

The teleconference was attended, through the HCC's platform, by many stakeholders including undertakings, associations of undertakings and traders, lawyers and economists, as well as academics, social partners and consumer organisations.

During the event, prominent academics and market representatives presented on a wide range of current legal and economic competition issues. In particular, the teleconference covered four key topics, namely: a) e-commerce vertical restraints, b) limitations resulting from digital platform activities, c) theories of harm related to the use of algorithms and big data, as well as d) state anti-competitive measures in the digital environment, through over-regulation of specific sectors.

Participants had the opportunity to communicate in real time with the representatives of the HCC and the speakers, to raise questions and express their views on issues of their interest.

The findings of the teleconference together with the participants’ comments will be assessed by the HCC Research Team and will be used to draft and send questionnaires to sector representatives. Phase A’ of the sector inquiry will be completed with the issuing of the first draft Report by the end of the year.

The next planned similar initiatives of the HCC include the organisation of teleconferences in the context of: a) the sector inquiry into basic consumer goods to discuss the findings of the relevant first draft Report in June 2020 and b) Phase Α΄of the sector inquiry into Fintech, in September 2020.

A teleconference video overview is uploaded to the HCC’s YouTube channel at: https://youtu.be/eNeh9PuNOtw

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