Online retail giant Amazon, has entered into a deal with Germany’s anti-trust authority to revamp its terms of services, which are relevant to third party merchants, which have been increasingly complaining of unfair business terms, when selling their goods through the world’s largest ecommerce retailer.
According to a statement by the Federal Cartel Office, the German watchdog stated that it was dropping a investigation that lasted for 7 months, after the US based retail giant made an agreement to overhaul its Business Services Agreement, which is applicable to merchants that use the company’s platform. The changes to the terms are expected to go live within 30 days.
Further, the changes to the terms of service will not be limited only to Germany, but will also be applied but to sites in other countries including France, UK, Spain and Italy, in addition to some regions in Asia and America.
Amazon has also made a statement saying that the changes made to the agreement would create greater transparency about the responsibility and rights of selling partners, which accounts for nearly 60 per cent of the merchandise available on the platform.
Online Retail Platforms under Increased Scrutiny
European regulatory bodies have been increasingly putting tech giants under intense scrutiny, especially after Google by Alphabet was hit with a massive fine worth billions of euros for breaching the competition rules of the European Union.
In addition, the anti-trust regulator for Germany, has also ordered Facebook to revamp how the company handles user data after its findings showed that the company had misused its dominance in the market.
The changes in the terms of service will include the compliance of Amazon with European regulations regarding liability towards business partners on the European platform. Now the company will have to give a 30 day notice, in addition to the valid reason behind the removal of a third party merchant from the platform.
In addition, merchants in Europe will now be able to take Amazon to court and appeal against decisions made by Amazon in their home country in select circumstances, a move which will aid small time traders.