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Industry flags obscurities in terms used in draft rules for e-commerce

Industry flags obscurities in terms used in draft rules for e-commerce

New Delhi: The Department of Consumer Affairs is reportedly facing criticism from certain sections of the government and industry on some of the provisions included in the draft made for e-commerce. The multiple players involved with the process of e-commerce have flagged the terms 'related party' and 'e-commerce entity' used in the draft erroneous, reports The Indian Express.

While the Department for Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade (DPIIT) and the Ministry of Electronics & Information Technology (MeitY) have raised their objection on the Consumer Affairs Department's perception of "overreach" over the feeling that it is an intrusion into their areas, the industry feels that the terms used have no focus, extending its realm.

Industrial players are of the opinion that the term 'related party' does not define a particular area while leaving space for all entities such as those involved in logistics, and any joint ventures, leaving options to be construed with a broad definition.

The industrial players sought more clarity for the terms pointing out that the obscurity of the terms not only create difficulties for foreign players like Amazon and Flipkart but also for the home-grown e-retailers like Tata Group and Reliance to sell their products online.

The term 'related party' in the proposed provisions would not allow a joint venture like the Tata Group and Starbucks to sell its products on a Tata super-app, The Indian Express quoted an industrial representative as said.

The Consumer Affairs Department has now reportedly invited suggestions from stakeholders to revise the draft that had been announced on June 21. Stakeholder views have been received, and the department is in the final stages of notifying the rules governing the sector.

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