From 1 January to 30 June 2018, Bulgaria will hold the presidency of the Council of the European Union. This will be the first time Bulgaria takes the helm since joining the EU bloc in 2007. The new presidency will have to take over the negotiations on a wide range of dossiers linked to the Digital Single Market (DSM) Strategy of the European Commission that are currently blocked in the Council, as well as move forward with new legislation announced in the Presidencies Trio program.
In their Trio program, Estonia, Bulgaria and Austria particularly emphasized their plan to foster the development of the Digital Single Market. They committed to pursue the work on VAT on ecommerce, encourage cross-border ecommerce as well as intensify the take up of electronic identification.
The Bulgarian Presidency has already declared its intention to actively continue the work of the Estonian presidency on digital policies. Its first task will be to handle the negotiations on the ePrivacy Regulation and the Geo-blocking Directive, two files on which Member states will not likely reach an agreement before the end of the year. To learn more about Ecommerce Europe’s position on those two files, you can consult our position paper on ePrivacy and our position paper on Geo-blocking.
The new Presidency also declared its commitment to pursue the work on digital skills and on the free flow of non-personal data in the EU. For the time being, Bulgaria is preparing to take over the Presidency and discussing its priorities with the relevant Directorate-Generals in Brussels.
For an overview of Ecommerce Europe’s recommendations on the Digital Single Market, please read our Manifesto on Milestones to achieve a #DigitalSingleMarket.