To be sure, the European Commission promised to create a single digital market two years ago, estimating that it could boost the EU economy by €415 billion ($448.5 billion) annually. But Hosuk Lee-Makiyama and Philippe Legrain of the Open Political Economy Network recently delivered a scathing assessment of the results. Europe’s “single digital market,” they argue, currently amounts “to a jumble of outdated, corporatist, counterproductive industrial policies that favor producers over consumers, big companies over small, traditional incumbents over digital startups, and EU firms over foreign ones.”
Instead of liberalizing, the EU wants to regulate. For example, it is working to ban companies from refusing online sales (except for copyright reasons) or setting different prices on the basis of a customer’s home country. Other dangerous possibilities – such as an effort to regulate data ownership, access, and usability – lie on the horizon.
Read the full article by William Echikson