Thursday, 11 October 2012

Boosting confidence and growth

Today the Council of the EU adopted a resolution: "A European Consumer Agenda - Boosting confidence and growth" in reply to earlier Communication of the European Commission of 22 May 2012. (The New Consumer Agenda) The Council welcomes the initiative of the Commission that singles out initiatives to be performed in the next years in order to empower consumers and boost their trust. The Council recognized:

"That the fragmentation among national parts of the Single Market and the growing complexity of the markets, characterised by globalisation of the production and supply chains, increasing digitalisation and an overload of information targeting consumers, is rapidly changing consumers' needs and expectations. Ensuring a high level of consumer protection in this context and empowering consumers by providing them with sufficient tools, knowledge, skills and competences to make conscious and informed choices, as well as facilitating sustainable consumption, is vital, taking also into account the particular needs of the more vulnerable consumer groups."

"That the Special Empowerment survey published in 2011-12 showed that one in four European consumers does not feel confident and more than one in three does not feel knowledgeable, and that the 2012 Spring Consumer conditions Scoreboard13 identified important gaps in the enforcement of consumer and product safety legislation in the Union"

"That, therefore, reaching the overall objectives of the European consumer strategy 2007-2013 - to allow citizens to shop from anywhere in the Union, from corner-shop to website, confident they are equally effectively protected, and to enable retailers to sell anywhere on the basis of a single simple set of rules - have not yet been fully attained"

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