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ARTICLE12 May 2021

Joint Nordic position on digital market law

The Nordic business organisations of Sweden, Norway, Finland and Denmark present a common position on the European Commission’s new proposal for a Digital Markets Act (DMA). 

Photo: MostPhotos/Ernst Henry Photography AB

The Nordic business organisations Confederation of Swedish Enterprise, Næringslivets Hovedorganisasjon (NHO), Elinkeinoelämännen Keskusliitto (EK) and Dansk Industri (DI) are all working for better conditions for entrepreneurship and for well-functioning markets, both digital and physical. Well-functioning markets should allow both large and small enterprises to compete and grow on the basis of their own strengths and characteristics.

However, it is important to recognise that digital markets have certain unique characteristics. These make it more difficult to ensure - through the existing competition rules - that strong market dynamics and the appropriate conditions exist for all market participants. This is why new and more effective regulations are needed.

However, it is vital that the new rules are not more complicated or expensive than necessary. Furthermore, legal certainty, predictability and strong incentives for entrepreneurship and innovation must be preserved.

The key messages from the Nordic business organisations are:

  • We support the proposal to supplement existing competition law with rules to ensure that competitive markets in the digital sector are more predictable and effective.
  • It must be possible for companies to challenge existing players in digital markets and to create growth, both on their own merits and by offering innovative and efficient services.
  • A harmonized regulatory framework should be safeguarded as much as possible. Additional national legislative initiatives covering the same competencies should be avoided, to reduce the risk of overlapping or conflicting regulation.
  • Conferring on the Commission investigative, enforcement and monitoring powers, and involving Member States through the Advisory Committee on Digital Markets, will contribute to the uniform application of the law.
  • The Commission should allocate the resources required to be able to exercise effective and efficient supervision of the DMA once it enters into force.
  • The DMA should be very clear on who is targeted and apply to companies that have the greatest market power and the ability to exercise such power in the digital markets.
  • The DMA should apply extraterritorially to digital platforms based outside of Europe but offering their services to business users and end users based within it.
  • The quantitative thresholds set out in Article 3(2) contribute to predictability and legal certainty. The threshold values should be evaluated in connection with the review of the regulation.
  • The possibility of designating gatekeeper status to a company through additional criteria in Article 3(6) provide flexibility, but the criteria need to be further clarified as business need legal certainty.
  • We support the proposal in Article 3(7), that the Commission shall determine the core platform services offered by the gatekeepers and which of those would be subject to the obligations in Articles 5 and 6.
  • For the regulation to remain relevant over time and to continue to contribute to predictability, innovative power and a good investment climate, the rules must - as far as possible - be principle based and technology neutral.
  • A regulatory dialogue - such as that proposed in Article 7 - is important. It increases legal certainty, proportionality and relevance. Any gatekeeper who is subject to a review by the Commission must therefore always be given the opportunity to comment.
  • We question the possibility of suspending an individual core platform service from specific obligations on the grounds of financial considerations (Article 8).
  • The conditions for exempting an individual core platform service from certain public interest obligations (Article 9) should be further clarified.
Reglering av digitala plattformarEUDigital Markets ActDigitalisering
Written byCarola Ekblad
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