Economy Minister wants digital package approved in Portugal and in force 'as soon as possible'

The Minister of the Economy today defended that it is "very important that Europe can act quickly and have a regulation approved and put into force as soon as possible", referring to the "law on digital services" and the “law on digital markets”.

"What we think, especially with regard to the digital package, is that it is very important that Europe can act quickly and have a regulation approved and put into force as soon as possible", said Pedro Siza. Vieira.

The Minister of State for the Economy and the Digital Transition met with Portuguese journalists in Brussels on the eve of the Competitiveness Council, which meets in person on Thursday, in Brussels, and has on the agenda a set of legislative proposals on the digital market, presented by the European Commission in December and entitled “Digital Services Act” (DSA) and “Digital Markets Act” (DMA).

Recognizing that both packages address' different aspects of how digital markets work '- bearing in mind that DMA refers to' how digital platforms relate to market operators' and that DSA deals with 'issues content and the way in which people, citizens and platforms act according to the content they make available ”-, Siza Vieira underlined that it is” important “that” the two projects can take place at the same time. time ", both in the Council of the EU and in the European Parliament.

"It is very important that there is a legal regulation of these aspects: these digital markets have seen a very significant growth in recent years - especially in the last decade - with rules that are not adapted to the new characteristics. of these markets, ”he said.

According to the Minister of the Economy, the approval of both the DMA and the DSA will also allow Europe to "take the initiative to have regulations that are well tested, robust and in line with European values". which will allow it to establish a "Global Standard that other countries" and "other economic spaces" can follow.

“We have already achieved this with the General Data Protection Regulation, we believe that there are also conditions here to do so. Therefore, from the point of view of the Presidency, the most important thing is to take care to move forward and to create the conditions so that, in the months to come, these diplomas can come into force and establish themselves as a reference for the functioning of the digital markets. », He stressed.

Asked about the response of major platforms to the introduction of new laws, Siza Vieira admitted that "it is virtually inevitable" that regulations will have an impact on a "business model that has developed in the absence of rules" .

However, the Minister underlined that there is a "very big regulatory advantage" which is due to the fact that, through the DMA and the DSA, "the conditions are created" for the emergence of a "digital single market" " .

“We couldn't offer our consumers and our businesses the benefits of a market of 450 million consumers if we had 27 different regulations. And, therefore, it is very important and gives us a great advantage to have a European regulation which, moreover, has the potential to become a regulation of greater scope ”, he underlined.

In addition, he said, the rules in question will also introduce "predictability and confidence", establishing an "agreed frame of reference over a period of very open and relatively long discussion", which will "secure decisions. »In general and small businesses.

“Until we stabilize the legal framework applicable to digital markets, which have acquired a very decisive importance in global economies in recent years, we will always be uncertain of what will happen - a court decision, a political decision. - which has an impact which may be unfavorable ”, he stressed.

Siza Vieira thus informed that, during the Competitiveness Council, the Portuguese Presidency will present a “progress report which identifies the critical points” of the regulations and which comes after “extensive interaction with the Member States”.

"And we believe that we will be able, after the discussion tomorrow [quinta-feira], to present a compromise proposal and a compromise text which will allow us to make a lot of progress in these processes", he underlined.

Between Thursday and Friday, a Competitiveness Council takes place in Brussels, chaired by Pedro Siza Vieira on behalf of the Portuguese Presidency of the EU and focusing, on the first day, on the progress of the European Commission's proposals for new laws on digital services and digital markets.

On that day, EU ministers responsible for internal market and industry will debate legislative proposals - which aim to make everything “offline” also “online” - in order to provide political guidance for negotiation.

They will also analyze the EU's new industrial strategy and the European tourism sector, deeply affected by the pandemic.

On the second day, the Council will be devoted to the field of research and innovation and will bring together the Minister of Science, Technology and Higher Education, Manuel Heitor.

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