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Lords inquiry into online platforms explores competition and market dominance


Next week, Monday 2 November, a Lords Committee investigating online platforms will look at issues around market dominance.

The Lords EU Internal Market Sub-Committee will hear from figures from the world of technology and data management, as well as the Competition and Markets Authority.

The Committee is carrying out an inquiry examining the benefits and problems caused by  online platforms, as embodied by companies such as Amazon, Google, Uber and Airbnb.

Witnesses giving evidence on Monday at 4.15pm are Richard French, Legal Director, Digital Catapult; Matthew Fell, Director of Competitive Markets, CBI; and Antony Walker, CEO, TechUK.

In the following evidence session, starting at 5.15pm, the Committee will hear from Alex Chisholm, Chief Executive, Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) and Nelson Jung, Director of Mergers Group, CMA.

Questions which the witnesses are likely to face include:

  • What are the strengths of the UK digital economy and online platforms?
  • Do fragmented markets hinder the EU digital economy from keeping up with the US?
  • What are your concerns about the dominance of some online platforms?
  • Is competition enforcement sufficient?
  • Does competition only concern price?
  • Might the effects of dominance in these markets become more apparent in the long term?
  • Do regulators need to be more prescriptive in setting privacy standards?
  • Should the Commission try to reduce ‘lock-in' and ‘switching costs' for consumers? If so, how?

The evidence session will take place from 4.15pm, on Monday 2 November in Committee Room 2 of the House of Lords.

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