Australian regulator to survey Amazon.com, eBay and other online marketplaces

SYDNEY, July 22 (Reuters) – Australia’s competition regulator on Thursday launched an investigation into local units of Amazon.com Inc, (AMZN.O) eBay Inc (EBAY.O) and other online marketplaces for ensure fairness in a sector where sales have skyrocketed thanks to the coronavirus pandemic.

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC), which previously imposed the world’s toughest content licensing rules on internet giants Facebook Inc and Alphabet Inc (GOOGL.O) Google, asked for industry submissions. Read more

“Online marketplaces are an important and growing segment of the economy, so it is important that we understand how online marketplaces work and whether they work effectively for consumers and businesses,” said the president of the ACCC, Rod Sims, in a statement. “We want to be sure that the rules that apply to traditional retailing are also followed in the online context.”

The ACCC investigation will take submissions until mid-August with a final report expected in March 2022. Local representatives from Amazon and eBay were not immediately available for comment.

The ACCC will examine the relationships between large online marketplaces and third-party sellers and buyers, including impacts on competition and the handling of data, complaints and reviews.

Amazon has not achieved dominance of the Australian market since its launch in 2017 which it knows elsewhere, but has still doubled its sales during the 2020 schedule, the ACCC said.

Overall, Australian online shopping jumped 57% in 2020 to a record $ 50.5 billion amid a spate of coronavirus lockdowns, the regulator added.

The ACCC said it has received a wide range of complaints, including about the “quality of goods sold in markets, the timeliness of making payments to sellers, the way goods are displayed in the markets and the level of support provided. by the markets to the consumers in case to arise “.

The ACCC has conducted a series of surveys in recent months as part of a larger investigation into digital platform services.

($ 1 = 1.3609 Australian dollar)

Reporting by Byron Kaye; edited by Jane Wardell

Our Standards: Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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