AIG Newsletter 31 October 2022
Czech Presidency looks to widen the definition of political advertising
Within the Council’s latest compromise text (dated 19 October), the Czech Presidency has presented amendments to the Commission’s proposal on ‘Political advertising – improving transparency’, which was proposed to increase transparency in political advertising and take action on disinformation during election campaigns.
On definitions, the text frames political advertising in two ways: characterizing it as a service; and framing it more broadly to encompass the expression of political preferences by private citizens or by civil society organisations. On sanctions, the text gives the powers to national authorities, meaning the exercise of such powers would be at the discretion of each member state - the amount of the financial sanction can be of maximum 4% of the annual income, budget or the previous year’s turnover of the sponsor.
The Council also focuses on transparency, including clarifications on the requirements. Publishers would have to make it clear when an advertisement has been targeted or amplified with a statement.
Cult Committee adopts draft opinion on the “Transparency and targeting of political advertising”
On 25 October, the EP’s CULT Committee voted to adopt its Opinion on the transparency and targeting of political advertising.
Within the opinion, Rapporteur MEP Verheyen (EPP) stressed the need to clarify provisions related to the dissemination of political advertising through offline media forms and in order to ensure a consistent approach between offline and online service providers of political advertising. The Opinion also recognised the importance of coherence with the AVMSD, notably on safeguarding freedom of expression and the right to freedom of information, and highlights the necessity to clarify cooperation mechanisms between authorities to avoid future challenges.
Europrivacy: approval of the first certification mechanism to ensure GDPR compliance
The EDPB has approved the very first European Data Protection Seal, a certification that demonstrates compliance with data protection legislation. It is a first of its kind and ensures compliance with GDPR.
Developed under Europe’s Horizon 2020 research programme, the Europrivacy criteria is based on requirements laid out in regulation. Companies and services can use it to: assess the compliance of data processing activities; select data processors; assess the adequacy of cross-border data transfers; and assuring the adequate processing of personal data. The certification applies to a wide variety of data processing activities and emerging technologies.
CONSUMER CREDIT DIRECTIVE
On 26 October, EU institutions met for the second trilogue on the Consumer Credit Directive.
Rapporteur MEP Konečná (The Left) reported back to the lead IMCO Committee that they had discussed the scope, definitions and early repayments. Negotiations with the Council had brought substantial progress towards common solutions and a political compromise especially, in the area of the scope where the issue of the proportionality clause was resolved, as was the deferred payment issue.
The staff at technical level would work on the remaining issue to prepare work for the next trilogue (scheduled 1 December). Another 7 technical meetings were planned to this end – in addition to the eight that had happened since the first trilogue (15 September).
Numerous areas are likely to have been explored at the second stage. For example, information provided to consumers, a creditworthiness assessment, the advertisement of credit, caps and penalties.
COMMISSION WORK PROGRAMME
European Commission adopts 2023 workplan
On 18 October, the European Commission adopted its Work Programme for 2023.
The Commission Work Programme contains 43 new policy initiatives across all six of the headline ambitions of President Ursula von der Leyen's Political Guidelines, as outlined in her 2022 State of the Union speech and letter of intent: a European Green Deal; a Europe fit for the digital age; an economy that works for people; a stronger Europe in the world; promoting our European way of life; and a new push for European democracy.
The Commission will hold discussions with the EP and Council to agree a list of legislative priorities on which to take swift action. The Commission will continue to support and work with EUMS to ensure the implementation of new and existing EU policies and law.
DATES FOR YOUR DIARY
2 November: EU Secure and Innovative Digital Future, Czech Presidency.
14 November: Quality of Emerging Services for Speech and Audio: A user-centred perspective, ETSI.
21 November: Annual Digital Consumer Event, European Commission.
21 November: High-growth technology business conference 2022, European Patent Office.
21 November: How Should the EU Approach the Metaverse? The Center for Data Innovation.
30 November:How to ensure a balanced EU approach towards credit agreements for the benefit of consumers?, Renew Europe.