Competition Commission Mulls ‘Soft Advisory’ For E-Commerce
An e-commerce website opened on a laptop. (Source: Pixabay)

Competition Commission Mulls ‘Soft Advisory’ For E-Commerce

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Fair trade regulator Competition Commission of India is mulling issuing a “soft advisory” to e-commerce platforms regarding self-regulation of various aspects of their business activities, including transparency over ranking and rating mechanisms.

In May, the CCI started a study on e-commerce market and the findings would be released this month.

CCI Chairperson Ashok Kumar Gupta has said that as a pre-emptive or precautionary measure, the regulator might issue a “soft advisory to e-commerce platforms to self-regulate certain aspects of their practices to foster trust and a predictable relationship with the business users so that full competitive potential of e-commerce can be harnessed”.

The aspects might include transparency over ranking, data, and review and rating mechanisms, Gupta said in a speech on Dec. 4.

“These are complex issues and gauging the net impact on competition may not be as simple and straightforward,” he noted.

According to Gupta, the study would allow the regulator to further incorporate the feedback in “our final advisory such that practices of e-commerce platforms promote competition and consumer welfare”.

A copy of the speech titled ‘E-commerce and Challenges for Antitrust Enforcement’ has been posted on the regulator’s website.

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