An alliance of environmental and industry organisations have written an open letter to the European Parliament, calling on it to hold online marketplaces responsible for illegal and dangerous imports.
Online marketplaces, such as Amazon and AliExpress, have experienced a boom in sales as a result of the pandemic. Products sold via these retail platforms are frequently non-compliant with the law and pose significant risks to consumer health and the environment.
With problematic vendors typically located outside of the EU, it is difficult to take legal action in the event that the rights of consumers, competitors, or the environment are infringed.
The European Parliament is currently drafting legislative proposals regulating digital markets and product safety, set to come into force today (July 16).
In their letter, the consortium states: “Digital markets have to stop being the gateway for fake products or such that are unsafe, potentially life threatening or environmentally damaging.
“That’s why we urge the European Parliament to make Amazon, AliExpress and other online marketplaces responsible for the products offered on their websites, if there is no other actor in the EU who is responsible.
“They must compensate for the damage caused by products offered on their platforms, when no one else does.”