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Ireland draws a red line on the country of origin principle in the DSA – EURACTIV.com

Following France’s initiative against the principle of country of origin, Ireland is leading the counter-offensive of ten countries that believe this will disrupt the digital single market.

France has been pushing against the country of origin, which is one of the core principles of the e-commerce directive. This principle is reaffirmed in the Digital Services Act (DSA), which is a flagship legislative proposal currently being discussed by the EU member states of the Council of the European Union.

Under “home country supervision”, service providers are subject to the jurisdiction of the country in which they were established, and the French government is trying to change it to the country of destination.

The proposal was not welcomed by several member states, especially Ireland, which believed that “any erosion of this principle is a red line.” This is according to EU diplomatic sources who spoke with EURACTIV.

Under the coordination of Ireland, the national alliance composed of Croatia, Czech Republic, Estonia, Finland, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Slovakia and Sweden signed an informal document “On Effective Supervision under the Digital Services Act.”

“The country of origin principle is to provide the necessary legal certainty and a basis for understanding the rules and regulations that companies must comply with when engaging in cross-border trade and the competent authorities they need to deal with,” read the non-document seen by EURACTIV.

These ten countries pointed out that the country of origin principle is important for digital services because they are inherently cross-border. The argument states that reversing the principle will incur the regulatory costs of compliance with 27 different jurisdictions for SMEs.

“Any change to this basic single market approach would essentially undermine the development of digital services in Europe, allowing only very large players to expand in the single market,” the non-document led by Ireland added.

The current governance system requires that only the country where the service provider lives legally can take corrective measures, and other member states can cooperate and assist as needed.

These ten countries believe that this is the best solution and that any alternative will cause legal uncertainty and split the single market. They finally called for closer cooperation among EU countries, which has been included in the DSA’s implementation measures.

[Edited by Alice Taylor]

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