Consumers Reader: What are the highlights of the new European Union Consumer Agenda - Part 1

We created the section "Consumers Reader" to acquaint Bulgarian consumers with news related to their rights and opportunities to file complaints and resolve their disputes with traders from which products or services they are dissatisfied.

In this publication we talk about the highlights of the document, which lays the foundations of the consumer protection policies for the period 2020 to 2025 - Consumer Agenda. It aims to respond to the European consumers’ immediate needs in the context of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and to increase their resilience. The program covers five main priority areas:

  • green transition;
  • digital transformation;
  • redress and enforcement of consumer rights;
  • specific needs of certain groups of users;
  • international cooperation.

Did you know that we as consumers generate 54% of the EU's gross domestic product?

The aim of the new European policies will be to stimulate demand, while promoting greener, fairer conditions and better informed and digitized consumption. Serious attention is also paid to effective law enforcement and legal protection of consumers, as well as support for those with special needs.

European market in Covid-19 pandemic

In connection with the covid-19 pandemic, the Commission plans:

  1. By 2022, to analyze the extent to which the Package Travel Directive is still appropriate. The need for this measure arose due to the growing need for security for consumers in advance payments for tourist services and the difficulties of the sector with liquidity, respectively the inability to return the money to its customers in case of non-implementation.
  2. By 2022, to commit to forecasting, examining the long-term impact of COVID-19 on human consumption patterns in the EU, as a basis for future policy initiatives. In the context of a pandemic, online shopping has increased significantly. As a result, the generation of packaging and plastic waste is also increasing. Another effect is that we increasingly choose to shop from small local stores. The negative manifestations of the pandemic are related to the increase of fraud, unfair commercial practices, misleading advertisements for miraculous healing properties and products. In this regard is the next planned action.
  3. The Commission to support and facilitate cooperation between consumer protection organizations and other stakeholders to combat misleading practices, unfair market practices and consumer fraud.

Recently, our online school for good commercial and consumer practices, NAIS Academy, conducted its first training on unfair consumer practices, in which it explained what they are, how traders should be careful not to allow them and what fines threaten them if they willingly or unwillingly use such practices.

If as consumers you feel that you are threatened by unfair commercial practice, you can always file a complaint on the European ODR platform to try to solve the problem with the EU  trader, either local or cross-border. The negotiations with the company will be aided by a third independent and impartial person, a mediator. We will be glad to help you if you choose NAIS as an ADR body. All this happens entirely online, in the form of a chat, from a convenient place for you and the merchant, at a time convenient for each of the parties.

Do not miss the next publications in the News section of In the section "Consumer Reader" we will tell you about the most interesting conclusions from the research of the European Commission, conducted in 2020, on consumer habits and the way the Covid-19 pandemic has affected European consumers.

In the section "Handbook for Trade Leaders" we will continue the series "ARE CUSTOMER COMPLAINTS A GOOD THING AND HOW MUCH DOES AN UNDERRATED COMPLAINT COST"

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Published on 24.03.2021 Back to news