Ministerial Council WP to examine regulatory implications of e-commerce, web seal issues and unfair contract terms

Ministerial Council WP to examine regulatory implications of e-commerce, web seal issues and unfair contract terms

From: Ian Johnston <ian.johnston§>
Date: Thu, 22 Aug 2002 00:56:26 +1000
Possible implications for AU domain name industry.

Ian Johnston
Small Enterprise Telecommunications Centre (SETEL)

SETEL is a national small business consumer association
advancing the interest of Australian small business
as telecommunications and e-commerce consumers


FRIDAY 2 August 2002

The Ministerial Council on Consumer Affairs (MCCA) held its eleventh annual
meeting in Adelaide today. MCCA comprises Commonwealth, State, Territory and New
Zealand Ministers responsible for fair trading, consumer protection laws, trade
measurement and credit laws.

Outcomes of the meeting included:

Electronic Commerce and Mobile Commerce

In response to issues raised by Victoria, Ministers established a Working Group
(to be chaired by Victoria) to examine consumer and regulatory implications of
e-commerce and 'm' or mobile commerce.

The Working Party will examine the advantages and disadvantages of whether
jurisdictions should adopt further uniform statutory measures to protect
consumers when engaging in e-commerce and determine whether state jurisdictions
should adopt an extra-territorial regime for their Fair Trading Acts that
catches all activities of e-tailers, wherever located.

The Working Group will also examine issues relating to web seals of approval.

While much of the regulation of telecommunications is undertaken at the Federal
level, there are some important issues in relation to m-commerce that must be
addressed by State regulatory agencies. Issues that State and Territory consumer
and fair trading agencies will be particularly interested in include credit
provision, billing and contractual arrangements, privacy implications and
marketing issues.

Unfair Contract Terms

Fair Trading and consumer protection jurisdictions across Australia share a
growing number of problems with unfair terms of consumer contracts in various
areas of the marketplace. Ministers directed SCOCA to establish a working party
to investigate policy options to address unfair terms of consumer contracts and
the merits of adopting a more nationally consistent and effective regulatory
regime and report to MCCA with recommendations by the end of February 2003.
Received on Fri Oct 03 2003 - 00:00:00 UTC

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